Flag Flying Days

Yesterday, 9th May, was a Flag Flying Day. These are listed on the College of Arms website with some guidance on how to fly flags correctly.

Here is a list of Flag Flying Days this year.

9 January Birthday of the Duchess of Cambridge
20 January Birthday of the Countess of Wessex
6 February Her Majesty’s Accession
19 February Birthday of the Duke of York
1 March St David’s Day (in Wales only, see note 1)
10 March Birthday of the Earl of Wessex
13 March Commonwealth Day (second Monday in March)
17 March St. Patrick’s Day (in Northern Ireland only, see note 5)
21 April Birthday of Her Majesty the Queen
23 April St George’s Day (in England only, see note 1)
9 May Europe Day (see note 4)
2 June Coronation Day
10 June Birthday of the Duke of Edinburgh
17 June Official celebration of Her Majesty’s birthday
21 June Birthday of the Duke of Cambridge
17 July Birthday of the Duchess of Cornwall
15 August Birthday of the Princess Royal
12 November Remembrance Day (second Sunday in November, see note 2)
14 November Birthday of the Prince of Wales
20 November Her Majesty’s Wedding Day
30 November St Andrew’s Day (in Scotland only, see note 1)

We will not be flag flying on 9th May for much longer but while we do here is some guidance.

Where the European flag is flown on this day, the Union Flag should fly alongside the European flag and, on UK government buildings that only have one flagpole, the Union Flag should take precedence.

There are unscheduled flag flying days when they are flown at half- mast. This happened after the Paris terrorist attack and when the King of Thailand died last October. Not everyone obeys the rules. Here is the Union flag above Buckingham Palace at half-mast while up Constitution Hill the Duke of Wellington’s standard does not recognise the royal demise. I had a bit of a row with English Heritage about this. They would not admit that they were at fault. They should have read this.

King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand: Flag Instructions
13 October 2016
Learning with sadness of the death of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand, special instructions have been received that all Union flags on the buildings of Her Majesty’s Government should be lowered to half mast as soon as possible today (13 October 2016) until 2000 hours tomorrow (14 October).

Any other UK national flags flown alongside the Union Flag when it is at half-mast should also be at half-mast. If a flag of a foreign nation is normally flown on the same stand as the Union Flag, it should be removed.

Local authorities are not bound by this request but may wish to follow it for guidance. Devolved administrations are responsible for issuing instructions for the flying of the Union Flag on buildings in their estate and others as necessary. Enquiries regarding the correct protocols for the flying of Union and other flags should be addressed to the Officer in Waiting at the College of Arms in the first instance.

Buckingham Palace, 14 October 2016.
Apsley House, 14 October 2016.

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