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Hanging your Jubilee flags the right way

May 31, 2012

We are approaching the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee weekend so the Union Jacks are appearing all over the UK. It’s wonderful to see them but did you know there is a correct way to hang our national flag?

The Union Jack combines the Cross of St Andrew (Scotland) with the Cross of St Patrick (Ireland) placed over the Cross of St George (England). The correct way to hang the flag is with the wider white diagonals on top next to the flag pole. It can be rotated but as it is not entirely symmetrical you can’t invert it. This little known fact leads to it often been seen upside down!

Deliberately flying a Union Jack upside down is actually known to be a signal of distress – or an insult to Crown. It is technically still a crime in the UK and the Commonwealth so make sure you hang yours the correct way!

The past couple of years has seen a profusion of Union Jacks appearing on high street products. It sometimes seems the flag is available in every possible colour combination and on every product you could imagine! If you plan to spend the weekend in bed maybe this patriotic bedding from John Lewis is for you. Although the designers have slightly changed the colours the dimensions of the flag are correct – and it’s the right way up!

We should all get into the Jubilee spirit and celebrate Her Majesty The Queen’s dedication to our country. So get your Union Jack’s out – just make sure they are flown the right way, you really don’t want to be celebrating the Jubilee in the Tower of London 🙂

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11 Comments leave one →
  1. May 31, 2012 9:49 am

    To the tower for me, I never new there was an incorrect way, I’m of to check the village bunting is legal! Nice post.

    • May 31, 2012 11:46 am

      Thanks Tristan. An entire estate near us had theirs upside down – they are busy changing it now after my partner pointed out the error! Happy Jubilee ….

  2. May 31, 2012 12:37 pm

    This drives my husband crazy but I didn’t even know the rule until recently – I certainly didn’t know it was an insult to the Crown! Really fun blog post Andrew, Happy Jubilee 🙂

    • May 31, 2012 12:59 pm

      It seems to be a man thing Louisa, a couple of other people have said it drives their husbands mad! Glad you liked the post – just make sure your flags are hanging the right way 🙂

      • Mike O permalink
        June 2, 2012 6:49 pm

        Did you know that it is an offence punishable by law to place a stamp, which bears the Queen’s head, upside down on an envelope?

  3. June 4, 2012 11:57 am

    Did you also know that it is an offence to fly any other flag ABOVE the ‘Union Flag’ It is your ‘Right’ to fly the flag any time without permission BUT………. you have to apply for planning permission to have a permanent flagpole.

  4. September 9, 2012 3:48 pm

    Well as a flag seller I never knew any of this. By the way if you like top quality union jack flags, take a look in my store here

  5. Freddy Hudson permalink
    August 25, 2013 10:46 am

    Well done Andrew. It’s a pity that so many British people don’t know the right way round for the Union Flag. But it does get worse than that. Very few know that there is also a right way round for the English Red Rose. As any Lancashire Man would tell you, the English Rose should be displayed with two petals to the top and a single petal to the bottom.
    The White Yorkshire Rose is the opposite way round.
    The history of the red rose stretches back 5000 years to the Middle East and was brought to England by the Romans. For 1500 years it was and still is the Lancaster Rose. It became the Red Rose of England in 1485 after the battle of Bosworth Field and the death of Richard the Third, at the same time it also became the emblem of the County of Lancashire.
    Lancashire then became and still is, England’s Premier County.
    Since 1399 and to this day, the Crown, whether male or female as always been the Duke of Lancaster.
    The Red Rose Lad.


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