Dr David Headon's verdict on Canberra's coat of arms:
1. The triple-towered castle: Castles might work well for olde-worlde coats of arms, created centuries ago, but not for Canberra in the 21st century. An irrelevant symbol now.
2. The sword of justice: Could be included but seems awkward, at best, for this century (scales of justice in a modern democracy?).
3. Parliamentary mace: Still relevant in formal terms, but a question mark over its cultural relevance.
4. Imperial crown: An embarrassment in the 21st century.
5. Rose of York: Included as a courtesy, in 1927, for "Bertie", the Duke of York, but absurd today.
6. Portcullis (castle gate): Same as the triple-towered castle, but is also a mediaeval prison gate. Irrelevant.
7. Gum tree: Sadly, the (barely visible) tree behind the portcullis prison gate is meant to be a gum tree. It bears zero resemblance. Drawn by someone who has never seen a gum tree in their lives.
8. Supporters: The black and white swans, with no reference points from the 1920s, hold up well - precisely because the black swan is recognised locally.
9. Motto: Could readily be dropped, unless the community thinks otherwise. Present motto privileging the Queen/King over the "people" - if we accept that it's the "people", not the "mob". Inappropriate for our present-day democracy.