Staveley Arms of Devon
The Staveley’s of Devonshire are understood, via information received from the College of Heralds, to originally have come from Stainton, Yorks. Stainton is a village lying at the foot of the valleys of Swaledale and Wensleydale between Richmond and Leyburn (today just off the A6108 and virtually in the army firing ranges of the Catterick garrison!) which if of course at the heart of Staveley country and would suggest strong familial links, probably to the Swinton family about ten miles further to the south. The Devonshire Staveleys appear to have arrived down in the South West circa 1500, and were awarded arms in 1511, 1564 and 1630 consisting of: “Argent on a Chevron between 3 lozenges azure, 3 bucks heads Or” i.e.
Three Gold stags heads on a blue chevron background and three blue diamond shaped figures or lozenges, all on a silver background.
In the record of the 1533 Visitation of Devon the award of arms to Richard Staveley, grandson of the original Richard Staveley who came to Devon in about 1500 is shown as being ‘differenced’, that being with a crescent on the first lozenge which indicates he was the ‘second’ son.
This just may possibly have been the blazon of the now defunct Swinton family, as this design and colour combination (both chevron and lozenges are blue) was not as used by the Stainley line (where the chevron and lozenges are black) or the Thormanby line (where the chevron is blue and lozenges are black).
Author: Peter Staveley