|23 Jun 2022|
|From the Archives|
As we look back over the past 100 years, we can see how our crest has changed and evolved.
As a campus of Presbyterian Ladies’ College, our earliest crest was that of PLC Sydney. Essentially, this crest was identical to that of the Presbyterian Church of NSW. The only distinguishing feature was the School’s motto Sancte Sapienter, which loosely translates to Be Holy Wise.
At the end of 1929, the PLC Council sold the School to an assistant teacher, Miss Emily Gurney. Miss Gurney called her school Arden, after the forest in Shakespeare’s play, As You Like It. The new name also brought about a change in identity. Green and white were officially adopted as Arden’s colours, and our motto, In God, My Joy, was used for the first time. A simple crest, featuring a stylised version of the School’s name, was also introduced. With Miss Gurney’s retirement in 1939, and the sale of the School to Miss Lillian Windridge, the use of this crest continued.
As time went on, and the School’s fortunes took a turn for the worse, Arden was purchased by the Church of England in 1946. With low student numbers, transitory staff and the constant threat of closure, Miss Gurney’s crest soon fell into disuse. In February 1955, our governing body, the Council for the Promotion of Sydney Church of England Diocesan Schools discussed the issue and noted:
…that there was still some concern that Arden was still without a School Badge. The matter was given some consideration, and it was finally decided that [Headmistress] Miss Lee should follow up plans for a new badge and submit suggestions to the Council.
Farmers, the department store that supplied our school uniform, submitted a design featuring a single white A in a green shield. This was formally adopted as our official crest by the Council for the Promotion of Sydney Church of England Diocesan Schools in April 1956.
In 1963, Arden moved away from the Council for the Promotion of Sydney Church of England Diocesan Schools and came under the authority of the newly formed Arden School Council. A period of growth and expansion followed. As the School came into its own, the decision was made to update the crest and make it uniquely Arden. Reflecting the academic and Christian aspects of the School, the new crest depicted an open book and cross within a shield for the first time. This was also the first time that In God, My Joy was included in the crest.
Since this time, our crest has been updated and modernised, most recently in 2014. Always featuring green and white, along with our motto, the book and cross, the essential elements have remained unchanged.