County Flags

county flags b and w

Various British county flags

The county flags of Great Britain are a relatively recent phenomenon, with the vast majority of them being adopted in the past twelve years; the most popular however, is the white cross on black of Cornwall, which is much older and which Cornishmen contend is most certainly a national flag. This has become an iconic symbol of Cornwall and the Cornish – it is hard to miss on a car bumper driving down any British motorway.


Devon’s flag

Another popular county flag is the white rose on blue of Yorkshire, which was a fairly common sight in the Olympic crowds at London 2012, with the likes of Yorkshire’s Jessica Ennis and the Brownlee brothers competing in the games. However, the recent emergence of county flags has to be credited to the adoption of the county flag of Devon, adopted in 2002. This inspired other counties to adopt their own official banner, with competitions taking place in shires such as Lincolnshire, Dorset and Orkney, all enthused by the acceptance of Devon’s flag.

County Flags have to be registered with the Flag Institute on the UK Flag Registry. As it stands, February 2018, there are 48 British county flags; 36 in England, 7 in Wales and 5 in Scotland.

EnglandMapNovember2017A map of the county flags of England, February 2018. Click on the image to see a larger version.

The latest flag to be officially adopted is that of Sutherland registered by the Flag Institute and recognised by Scotland’s Lord Lyon on Wednesday 25th January 2018.

Britain’s newest county flag: Sutherland

For a full history and news on all of Great Britain’s county and regional flags, please visit the British County Flags blog.