Scottish Barons have the right to petition the Lord Lyon King of Arms for a grant of arms with additaments appropriate for a baron (see our page on heraldry). They are also entitled to adopt the designation of ‘John Smith, Baron of X’, and can have this entered onto passports (depending on issuing country), driving license and credit cards.
There is no typical profile of the modern baron. Many barons have acquired their baronies to cement their family ties with Scotland. Others because of their keen interest in Scottish history and some because they wanted to treat themselves to something unique. We have also been able to assist several business people who feel that a title enhances their business reputation.
Scottish barons, depending upon their inclination, often take an active part in the affairs of their barony. One baron has helped towards the restoration of the village hall and War Memorial. Another baron has endowed an annual prize for the best student at the local agricultural college.
Baronies in former times were commercial in nature in that barons drew their incomes from their lands. Today many barons use their baronial status to further their business interests; the baron’s coat of arms may be displayed on letterheads. A barony title is not a peerage title; barony titles are noble titles which were formally tied to land.
There are a number of ways to obtain a barony title and without doubt the nicest way is to be left it as an inheritance. We will do nothing to persuade you that a barony title is a ‘good investment’, we are not financial advisers, however prices have risen steadily. Barony titles are to be enjoyed. If you do not have the good luck to inherit a title then the next best thing is to purchase one (and one day you can honour somebody you care for by bequeathing it to them). Baronies have been bought and sold since the beginning of the last millennium. It is true that in those days vast tracts of land attached to the barony but to-day you can purchase a noble title without having to purchase many thousands of acres.