Wales: No change to Union Flag

In an interview for BBC Wales this morning Charles Ashburner, a Welshman and the Flag Institute’s Chief Executive, has gone on record as saying that moves to change the flag of the United Kingdom to include Wales are “unlikely to be successful for the foreseeable future.”

Mr Ashburner suggested that whilst such a change might have been hard to resist in the event of a vote for Scottish independence, the mood throughout the country was now not conducive to a revamp of the UK’s global symbol.

This view is borne out by Admiral Lord West, Co Chair of the all party Flags and Heraldry Committee, who said that “as we are remaining one nation that we should let sleeping dogs lie and keep the Union Flag as it is.” a stand also reflected in a straw poll of members of the Flag Institute Council last night.

On behalf of BBC Wales ICM Research interviewed a random sample of 1006 Welsh adults aged 18+ by telephone on 19-22nd September 2014. Interviews were conducted across Wales and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults.  

“During the Scottish referendum campaign there was discussion over what should happen to the union jack flag if Scotland decided to leave the United Kingdom. The flag has the Scottish Saltire element of the blue background and white cross but it has no Welsh representation. Do you think:

A dragon (or green) should be included somewhere on the Union flag as a symbol of Wales: 45%

The flag should not be changed at all: 36%

Don’t care – it’s not my flag: 16%

Other: 2%

Don’t know: 1%”

On reviewing the poll Mr Ashburner suggested that there would have to be a much clearer desire within Wales before such a change could be discussed more widely throughout the UK. 

He did however conclude that a more likely change might be for Her Majesty to consider changing her own Royal Standard, already split into four equal sections with two currently representing England. “The UK has four nations within it” he said, “it is not inconceivable that Her Majesty could now choose to include Wales in the Royal Standard.”

5 Responses to Wales: No change to Union Flag

  1. James Bowman 2 November 2014 at 2:47 pm #

    I agree with Mr Ashburner that a new Royal Standard might not be a bad idea. As well as replacing the redundant English field with a Welsh one, perhaps it could replace the Irish harp with a symbol specific to Northern Ireland – perhaps a blue flax flower.

  2. David Owen 2 December 2014 at 8:06 pm #

    I think it is absolutely disgraceful that Wales is not represented on the Union Flag and please don’t mention tradition.
    Tradition dictated that only the monarch’s eldest male heir could inherit the throne, that has now changed.
    Tradition dictated that royals couldn’t marry Catholics, that has changed.
    Is Britain a modern, inclusive country or one steeped in long forgotten traditions perpetuated by the elite?
    Whenever and wherever the Union Flag is flow, the country and people of Wales are excluded.
    If this is how we treat our own people!

  3. David Owen 3 December 2014 at 7:49 pm #

    With regards to your introduction which states:-

    The Union Fag signifies the unity of the nations that make up the United Kingdom and dependencies, and demonstrates the bond of citizenship which we all share. Whatever our differences may be, whatever our faith, culture, political views, ethnicity, first language or traditional customs, we can all stand beneath this flag united together in common purpose.

    How can we stand united when one country and it’s three million inhabitants are excluded.

  4. Graham Jones 4 October 2019 at 4:35 am #

    I agree Wales sould be included in the union Jack by including the St David’s cross I think one main reason for this is when a Welsh athalete wins a medal for G B fliging the union Jack is not truly beeing repesented unlike the English Scots & Northern Irish & the same could also apply for a Welsh soldiers who has given there lives for the U K flag is on the coffin does no have any real meaning to the Welsh people

    • Graham Jones 4 October 2019 at 4:37 am #

      I agree Wales sould be included in the union Jack by including the St David’s cross I think one main reason for this is when a Welsh athalete wins a medal for G B fliging the union Jack is not truly beeing repesented unlike the English Scots & Northern Irish & the same could also apply for a Welsh soldiers who has given there lives for the U K flag is on the coffin does no have any real meaning to the Welsh people

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