British Naval Flags and Ensigns

Royal Fleet Auxiliary Ensign
The Royal Navy's logistical support is provided, not by commissioned naval vessels, but by the civilian-manned ships of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary Service - tankers, underway replenishment ships, and the like. For this reason they do not fly the White Ensign, and the names of these ships are preceded by "RFA" instead of "HMS".      Tom Gregg, 8 February 1997
RFA Black Rover at Plymouth 2005
Sailors from HMS Liverpool assisting in Nkwanta, Ghana

12' by 6' ensign; anchor approx 78cm x 40cm.
 Flag being sold on eBay by a gentleman who has obviously visited this site given his screen shot!
 3 feet by 3 feet

Government Service Ensign
Flag on the right measuring 36 inches by 18 inches with 571 4020 P.A.S. printed on side

Royal Maritime Auxiliary Ensign

Although it operates only a couple of ships now - the rest are under civilian contract - the RMAS had a long and strong history of operating non-combatants, mostly tugs and tenders.  Jim Woodward
72" by 35"

Royal Naval Auxillary Service and Royal Naval Minewatching Service Ensigns
In January 1953, the RN Minewatching Service (RNMWS) was formed, a civilian-manned organisation administered by the Admiralty and responsible in time of war for manning posts ashore and afloat around the coast of the UK and overlooking the principal navigable waterways. Its object was to spot mines dropped by enemy aircraft and report positions to local naval headquarters so that shipping could be warned and diverted as necessary and steps taken to deal with the mines. The service's badge was a mine splash on the sea.
 A printed Blue Ensign defaced with the badge of the Royal Naval Minewatching Service on a royal blue field, issuing from wavelets, water bursting up in an explosion, all within a yellow ropework border with a naval crown at the top. The badge is inscribed 'RNMWS'. The design is entirely printed and the flag machine sewn at the ends. 'London 1954' the broad arrow and foul anchor badge, also '3 BREADTHS MINEWATCHING' are printed on the hoist. A rope and two Inglefield clips are attached. This design was in use from 1952 to 1963 when the name was changed to the Royal Naval Auxiliary Service and the initials to RNXS. The Royal Naval Minewatching Service was manned by civilians and administered by the Admiralty. It was responsible in wartime for spotting mines dropped by enemy aircraft on major waterways.
An original vintage Royal Naval Auxillary Service Ensign, formed in 1962 from R.N.M.W.S., measuring 9 feet x 4 feet.

Personal collection: Stamped with the Government War Department's Crowfoot Arrow mark.

Sea Cadet Corps Ensign
  Blue ensign of the Sea Cadets. Synthetic/wool bunting with printed Union Flag in the canton and Sea Cadets badge machine sewn on the fly, inscribed 'SEA CADET CORPS', 'READY AYE READY'. Designed by H. Gresham Carr and adopted 3 October 1942. Rope and two Inglefield clips attached.

The Sea Cadet Corps is a national youth organisation sponsored by the Royal Navy and open to young people between the ages of 10-18 years old. It is the UK's largest Naval Cadet Force, following the rate and rank structure, traditions, values and ethos of the Royal Navy.
The Grimsby & Cleethorpes Sea Cadet Corps hosted the Trafalgar Sunday 2004 Church Parade at St James' and carried out a march-past before the Mayor of N.E. Lincolnshire at the Borough's Town Hall. The Sea Cadet Corps flag shown here was manufactured by United Flags & Flagstaffs Ltd.

Naval Section Combined Cadet Force
The ensign of Naval Section, Combined Cadet Force (United Kingdom) should not be confused with the ensign of the Sea Cadets Corps; these are two separate organisations.

Civil ('Pilot') Jack
Worn at the bow of British registered civilian vessels

9ft by 4ft
70" x 88"

Right, Circa 1935 on the sailing club launch at Hoylake.

Antique Vintage Canadian Navy Pilot Jack by Scyco; measures 24 inches by 18 inches

King's / Queen's Harbour Master

Construction sheet (left) by Christopher Southworth and Martin Grieve
The image of the Queen's Harbour Master flag shown above is after Flags of All Nations (HMSO 1958). The flag dates from approximately 1916 (when it read KHM) and was created by Order in Council. It is in use by Queen's Harbour Masters today, both in the United Kingdom and in Canada.
James Liston, 24 June 2002

Reputedly Erroneous White Ensign
Flag Guys is selling this apparently for 99 cents. ( Have to assume based on this description of a white ensign they have no idea about their trade.
According to them,
#H71 $.99 12x18" "British White Ensign" MISTAKE!! Without the red Cross of St John (?!?!?!) as shown below, this flag is "the fantasy flag of no place." We offer it at 99 cents for anyone who may have some use for it. We picked them up in an odd lot and have no idea how they got made.In fact, it is not as fantastical as they believe. It's actually the ensign of the Royal Yacht Squadron, founded as The Yacht Club in 1815 and granted Royal patronage in 1820. The Club adopted an unauthorised White Ensign without the large St George's Cross. The Admiralty banned this flag, but later relented and granted the privilege of using the Royal Navy's White Ensign in 1829. (information from

 Described by the seller as a WWII Royal Naval flag, "having been flown from a WW2 Royal Navy Warship." Sewn tunnel to one end for rope or flag pole. Top right white corner missing edge. Various small holes in the white linen.A number of holes in the Union Jack by the tunnel and the odd other small hole in the Union Jack. 86 cm by 182cm
Glen Line House flag

Measurements 106" (270cm) x 68" (173cm) 9ft x 6ft

British Port and Harbour Authorities

Port of London Authority

Images I took from Film of Churchill's funeral. After the service at St Paul´s, his coffin was taken to Tower Pier and loaded onto a Port of London authority launch to cruise along the River Thames to Festival Pier, and then onto Waterloo station. As the launch left Tower Pier, the Royal Air Force gave their final salute to the once wartime leader with a ´fly past´, only to be equalled by the London´s dockers lowering their cranes one by one as the launch sailed past.

Mersey Docks and Harbour Company Ensign
From page 80 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems
Sold on eBay measuring 6ft x 2ft 10" introduced at the end of the 19th century and used up to 1912.

Aberdeen Harbour Board Ensign

Produced by Flying Colours

North Wales and North West Sea Fisheries Ensign
From page 80 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems

South Wales Sea Fisheries Ensign
From page 81 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems

Eastern Sea Fisheries Ensign

From page 80 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems

Commissioners of Northern Lighthouses
Commissioner's ensign of the Northern Lighthouse Board flying outside their HQ at 84,George Street, Edinburgh. The NLB was founded in 1786 and NB the ensign flown predates the Union with Ireland in 1801 and does NOT incorporate the Saint Patrick's flag which now overlies the Saint Andrew's flag in present day Union Flags. It is the only British flag to still use the pre-1801 Union Flag. This flag is only flown from vessels with Commissioners aboard.  The ensign of the Commissioners of Northern Lights is a plain white ensign (no over-all St. George's Cross) with a blue lighthouse in the fly and a pre-1801 Union Flag in the canton. This is used only when a Commissioner is on board one of their vessels. The ensign in regular use is a normal Blue Ensign with a white lighthouse. Northern Lights is the General Lighthouse Authority in Scotland and the Isle of Man. Trinity House is the General Lighthouse Authority for England, Wales, Channel Islands and Gibraltar, and responsible for pilotage throughout the UK.

The Board's headquarters in George Street, Edinburgh. The nameplate on the door gives the traditional name of 'Commissioners of Northern Lights'. The Board HQ flies the Commissioner's flag, alongside the Saltire and the Isle of Man flag.
In this photograph it would appear that the fimbriation to the St George is too narrow on the flag in question, as it has apparently been approximately one-third of flag width from the beginning? The earliest official image of the 1606 pattern Union Flag is dated 1707, and this has that width of fimbriation so it sounds as if a little imagination has been at work? Neither is there any real justification for the canton proportions of 2:3. This, indeed, would have been roughly the ratio of jacks c1700, but the official illustration of 1707 shows proportions of 3:4, while about 4:7 (or slightly longer) would have been customary by the middle of the 18th Century and 1:2 by its end.
 Personal collection

Northern Lights Ensign from page 79 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems and at the stern of the NLB vessel Pharos, alongside Customhouse Quay, Greenock

The flag is just over 3ft wide by 2ft long and has a rope with wooden toggles on one end.

10 feet long by 5 feet

Company of Watermen & Lightermen
Royal National Lifeboat Institution

90cm x 42cm and length of the pole 115cm

Commissioners of Irish Lights

Trinity House Lighthouse Authority

1968 printed flag, 1.8m Long by 900cm wide.
 3ft 10 x 7 ft 10

Trinity House Flag on Portland Bill Lighthouse, Dorset (left) and THV Patricia getting underway commencing the journey to Spithead for the Trafalgar 200 International Fleet Review by Elizabeth II.

Marine Society
Marine Society Blue Ensign, the fly defaced with the society badge, inscribed 'MARINE SOCIETY 1756'. Wool bunting with a linen hoist, machine-sewn with the details of the badge painted. Rope and ties attached.

Maritime Volunteer Service  

 Founded by private endeavour in 1994 after the Royal Naval Auxiliary Service was abolished and the Royal Naval Reserve severely cut back.

Images reproduced by kind permission from the Maritime Volunteer Service

Ocean Weather Service

For most of the time between 1946 and 1981 ships in rotation were stationed at ten positions in the North Atlantic. As far as possible each ship remained in the same geographical position sending weather reports to meteorological forecasting centres and giving navigational assistance to trans-Atlantic aircraft. Britain was responsible for one station and shared responsibility with the Netherlands for another.

The first British weather ships were converted Flower Class corvettes. HMS 'Thyme' was converted in 1946 and named Ocean Weather Ship 'Weather Reporter'. In 1947 she was re-named 'Weather Explorer' and joined by HM Ships 'Genista', 'Marguerite', and 'Snowflake' as, respectively, OW Ships 'Weather Recorder', 'Weather Observer', and 'Weather Watcher'. They were sold or scrapped between 1958 and 1960 and replaced by converted Castle Class corvettes. HM Ships 'Amberley Castle', 'Oakham Castle', 'Pevensey Castle' and 'Rushen Castle' became respectively OW Ships 'Weather Adviser', 'Weather Reporter', 'Weather Monitor' and 'Weather Surveyor'.

The ships were owned by the Air Ministry, administered by the Meteorological Office and had civilian crews. Initially they flew the Red Ensign but in 1948 Admiralty letter NL 6920/48 of 19th November authorized a Blue Ensign defaced by a circular gold badge consisting of the sun rising over the sea encircled by the words 'Ocean Weather Ship', with over all a Royal Air Force eagle.
David Prothero

Humber Conservancy Commisioners

by Martin Grieve
The office has been disbanded for many years although the ensign is still flown from the historic Spurn Light vessel outside the Hull marina.

Royal Naval Association
57inch  x  34inch
 6" by 4" car/table flag

The Submariners Association Standard

Navy League flag

British Yacht Club Ensigns

Chipping Sodbury Yacht Club  

Glorious flag produced by Red Dragon Flagmakers
A report of the Chipping Sodbury Yacht Club annual regatta was published by the local gazette. The competition secretary neglected to mention that the event took place on a duck pond, with model yachts. 
Royal Mersey Yacht Club
The special ensign of the Royal Mersey Yacht Club. Founded Birkenhead 1844. Title 'Royal' granted 23 September 1844. Admiralty Warrant for special ensign granted 24 September 1844. Original badge was just the Liver bird; crown added between 1869 and 1875.

Royal Channel Islands Yacht Club

Royal Cornwall Yacht Ensign

 1 Yard (left) and 64cm by 30cm (right)

 110 x 54cm with maker's label sewn to it reading "CAPT. O.M.WATTS LTD., 202 MADDOX ST., LONDON, W.1.".

73 1/2 inches by 34 inches


72" x 32"

 Produced by Easy Flags

Royal Plymouth Corinthian Yacht Club
30" by 15" (760mm by 380mm)

Royal Corinthian Yacht Club

115cm by 53cm. On the side is sewn "Capt. J.H. Watts, London W1". From what I can gather, the flag appears to match the description of the Royal Corinthian Yacht Cub ensign as seen on page 86 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems.
Produced by Easy Flags

Royal Harwich Yacht Club

From page 87 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems. Although the seller describes this 68 x 34 inch flag as a 'Caledonian' Flag, based on the image it appears to be of the Royal Harwich Yacht Club.

The ensign of the Royal Harwich Yacht Club presented to Steam Yacht 'Fox' before F.L. McClintock's Franklin search expedition of 1857-1859. It takes the form of a blue ensign defaced in the fly with a yellow lion rampant. A rope and clip is attached to hoist the flag. The ensign is made of wool bunting with a linen hoist. It is hand sewn with the details of the rampant lion painted onto the fabric. F.L. McClintock recalls the ensign in his book 'The Fate of Franklin' p. 10. 'Being desirous to retain for my vessel the privileges she previously enjoyed as a yacht, my wishes were very promptly gratified; in the first instance by the Royal Harwich Yacht Club, of which my officers and myself were enrolled as members — the Commodore, A. Arcedeckne, Esq., presenting my vessel with the handsome ensign and burgee of the Club...'

Royal London Yacht Club

The history of the club is provided on the club website at
The Royal London Yacht Club was founded in London in 1838. Its first meeting place was the Coal Hole Tavern in Fountain Court on the Strand. Racing commenced on the [River] Thames. It obtained its Royal Warrant from the dowager Queen Adelaide in 1849. Now the Royal London Yacht Club has its House located in the centre of Cowes [Isle of Wight] waterfront, on a site that it has occupied since 1882. The club has a long history in British yachting. Its members have ranked among the most colourful personalities in the yachting scene. It was the first popular yacht club to bring the sport to Cowes . In its early days it fostered racing innovations and was instrumental in establishing a universal set of rules and system of measurement. Concern with the past is now balanced by an active and progressive membership with interests in all forms of yachting and a very active social calendar. Membership is limited to 500 members.
      5 foot 9 by 3 foot
200  cm x  115 cm

Royal Yorkshire Yacht Club

From page 88 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems.
 6ft by 3ft
  4 foot by 2 foot flag used in the early 80s on a yacht

Royal Forth Yacht Club
The Royal Forth Yacht Club has a website that can be found at I'm not persuaded that this image is entirely correct. Thus far, I have visited almost every Scottish yacht club website and have found no evidence that said visiting yacht clubs are actually utilizing the Scottish crown in any way. Most Scottish yacht clubs fly the undefaced blue ensign while their burgees will feature the St. Edward's crown. Clay Moss
The Cruising Association
Blue Ensign with red disk in lower fly bearing an upright white anchor. Jan Mertens
In 1950 the Cruising Association wanted a foul anchor, but had to settle for a clear anchor.
David Prothero
 personal collection: 30" by 14"
Bar Yacht Club

The Bar Yacht Club was established in London in about 1937, and was granted a special ensign in 1956. Bar is the collective name given to those lawyers known as barristers who are qualified to plead in the higher courts. The emblem is a roll of parchment tied with red tape. In Britain 'red tape' is a phrase for annoying and unnecessary rules and regulations. It is a reference to the red tape (which is actually pink) used by government offices to tie up bundles of papers. There is a passing reference to the club at David Prothero
Royal Anglesey, Royal Southampton and Royal Torbay Yacht Club Ensigns

Royal Northumberland Yacht Club
From page 88 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems
Royal Welsh Yacht Club

Royal Ocean Racing Club Ensign
In the flag of the Royal Ocean Racing Club, the pennants are both blowing towards the fly, which according to David Prothero is heraldically correct. Clay Moss

Royal Dee Yacht Club
The Royal Dee Yacht Club blue ensign is defaced with a wolf's head erased argent, langued gules', facing the hoist.

A wolf's head was the arms of Hugh de Abrincis (or Lupus) 1st Earl of Chester, William the Conqueror's cousin. He later got into trouble and "lost his head", hence 'erased', meaning violently torn-off, leaving a jagged edge, sometimes shown red. A complete wolf is one of the supporters of the arms of the City of Chester, and a wolf's head is the crest of the arms of the Cheshire Police.
David Prothero, 26 February 2003

Norie and Hobbs (1848) describes this flag defaced with a bird. The error presumably originated when the tongue was mistaken for a beak and the jagged neck for feathers. The error has been repeated in other books including the 1905 Flaggenbuch and the 1923 Album des Pavillons.
David Prothero, 27 February 2003

The Dumpy Pocketbook (1960) has a dog-like head, presumably white, but drawn furred (it's in black and white, so the alternative is that is plain and yellow). But then, this being an English publication from a time with easier communications, they probably asked the club directly.
Royal Burnham Yacht Club
 Identical to the Customs Ensign from 1873-1949

City Livery Yacht Club
Warrants for the Defaced Blue Ensign are available from the Club Secretary. The Ensigns and Club Burgees are available from:: Ensign Flag & Regalia, 42 Dunes Way, Wellington Employment Park South, Liverpool L5 9RJ; tel: 0151 298 1007
The House of Lords Yacht Club

Poole Harbour Yacht Club
From page 85 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems

Royal Ulster Yacht Club

Severn Motor Yacht Club
The defaced Blue Ensign was granted 13 October 1969, following a period of eleven years when no civilian yacht club had been granted a special ensign. Why would the Ministry of Defence (Navy) unexpectedly grant a defaced Blue Ensign to a riparian motor yacht club fifty miles from the sea ?
It is probably no coincidence that the warrant was issued in the same year that the Thames Motor Cruising Club changed its name to Thames Motor Yacht Club and modified the badge on its Blue Ensign that was regarded, eighteen years earlier, as having been granted in recognition of the Club's wartime work. If this was publicised at the time, it may have led the Severn Motor Yacht Club, many of whose boats were requisitioned by the Admiralty during the Second World War, and a number lost on Active Service, to approach the MoD to be belatedly accorded the same privilege.
Aldeburgh Yacht Club
From page 84 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems

Little Ship Club
The Little Ship Club was founded as a private members club in 1926 to bring together yachtsmen and women working in the City of London who wanted to meet and exchange ideas during the long winter months. It rapidly became renowned for its classes in navigation and seamanship. In 1937, the club was awarded the right to fly the defaced Blue Ensign for its contribution to training the Royal Naval Volunteer Supplementary Reserve.
15" 36"
From Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems
Here is another variant of the ensign of the Little Ship Club, UK. Several credible sources over the years have made mention of this version of the LSC's ensign, and David Prothero pointed out several weeks ago that the design was even registered in March, 1939. The roped badge appears in the 1953 edition of Lloyd's Registry of Yachts but is replaced in Lloyd's '57 by the oak leaf wreath badge. I had commented earlier that there is an oak leaf LSC ensign hanging in their clubhouse that reportedly flew (illegally?) at the Dunkirk evacuation. If this is so, then the oak leaf ensign has been used at least as a variant since that time, around 1940. Nevertheless, there is enough documented evidence suggesting that this roped version existed, so here it is. Club officials that I spoke to have not seen or heard of the roped version. Clay Moss
Sussex Yacht Club

Founded at Shoreham and was granted a defaced Blue Ensign in 1955. At one time it shared premises (in Brighton), and was operated in conjunction with the Sussex Motor Yacht Club (plain Blue Ensign), but this association came to an end in the 1950s. David Prothero
Portsmouth Yacht Club 1936-1939 special ensign
The English Admiralty's first badge, a crescent and star, was taken from the Arms of the Royal Borough of Portsmouth, the site of the principal dockyard on the south coast. King Richard the First had adopted the emblem from the standard of the Byzantine Governor of Cyprus after taking the island during the Third Crusade, and had granted it to Portsmouth as Arms in 1194. The Ottoman Turks captured Constantinople in 1453 and adopted the Byzantine crescent and star as an emblem of the Turkish Empire. Thus the crescent and star lost its Christian associations, and although it is still the Arms of Portsmouth, it was abandoned by the Admiralty in the course of the 16th century. A Harleian manuscript of 1534 notes that "The Badge of the Admyralte ys a cresante with burning fyre", but later in the 16th century Admiralty Courts were using an anchor as their mark on detained goods. An anchor was the emblem of St Nicholas, patron of sailors, and in Christian symbolism a sign of security and hope. An example of the crescent and star badge can be seen on the special ensign of the Portsmouth Yacht Club, 1937 to 1939. David Prothero
Rochester Cruising Club

From the RCC website:
On 11 May 2005 the Secretary of State for Defence granted a warrant to Rochester Cruising Club for a Blue Ensign defaced with the badge of the club. The club burgee is yellow with a red lion, passant guardant, from the arms of the City of Rochester. On the ensign the lion is on a yellow disc in the lower corner of the fly. Application for the ensign was made to mark the club's one hundredth anniversary. It is the first new ensign granted to a club without military connections since 1977. David Prothero
Poole Yacht Club and Hamworthy and Bournemouth Yacht Club Ensigns
Personal Collection
This personal flag appears to be identical to that displayed and described on page 85 Graham Bartram's of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems as the ensign of the Poole Yacht Club. The reason is explained at
The story begins back in the middle of the 19th Century when the first records can be traced. Poole Yacht Club, as it is now constituted, is really the result of three clubs all closely connected in various stages eventually becoming one Club as it is today. The original Poole Yacht Club is thought to have been founded in 1865 but was probably in existence in some form many years earlier. The centenary was actually celebrated in 1965 at Hamworthy.

In 1898 The Hamworthy Sailing Club was started and many years later in 1936 it became known as The Hamworthy and Bournemouth Sailing Club. Subsequently in 1948 it became the Poole Yacht Club having taken over the name of the original club which had become almost defunct. The old club had headquarters in Poole High Street and the last Commodore was a Commander Linklater, who was also a Member of the Hamworthy and Bournemouth Sailing Club. He offered the name and all records and trophies if the Hamworthy and Bournemouth Sailing Club would take over the name of the Poole Yacht Club in order to preserve it in perpetuity. This was agreed and the 'new' Poole Yacht Club was officially registered with Commander Norman Hibbs as Commodore.
One reason was to build up the total tonnage of yachts belonging to members in order to be able to apply for an Admiralty Warrant. This would give the Club the right to use the Blue Ensign which was a rare privilege amongst clubs in the U.K. The minimum Thames tonnage required was 2000 tons so it was extremely difficult to reach that figure. Only one other club locally had this distinction, the Royal Motor Yacht Club. For a while, Hamworthy and Bournemouth Sailing Club could only muster about 700 tons, a long way from the target. The Commodore had invited Tom Sopwith, that famous sailor to open the extension of the Club but he was unable to be present. The Commodore and Ken Morgan then had the brilliant idea of inviting Sopwith to accept honorary membership of the club and, being an old friend of Col. Pierce, he gladly accepted. It meant, of course, that his large yachts, including the famous Endeavour, brought the total tonnage to over the required 2000 tons.
Application was made to the Admiralty later in 1938 and the Warrant was granted.
It was undoubtedly a shock to some of the local yachting fraternity and other Clubs that the relatively small Hamworthy and Bournemouth Sailing Club should have the important Blue Ensign. The surprise and envy delighted the Commodore immensely.

The Ensign was defaced by a circle on the blue background containing the cross of the Club's burgee and a gold coloured fir cone in the centre. This fir cone represents the name 'Bournemouth' in the name. It is still our emblem but the ensign can only be flown on yachts that are registered and the owner a club member. It is also a requirement that the Ensign must be flown under the Club's burgee and only when the owner is on board or in the near vicinity. At all other times only the Red Ensign is allowed to be flown.
Parkstone Yacht Club

Medway Cruising and Yacht Club Ensigns
Medway Cruising Club
Medway Yacht Club

103" x 51" (8 ft x 4ft)

93cm x 45cm

The Thames Motor Yacht Club

From page 89 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems
35 X 16.5 inches
  The Thames Motor Yacht Club is honoured to have been given the right to fly its own defaced blue ensign, a privilege bestowed on the Club in 1951 by The Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty. This special year in the Club”s history appropriately marked its "coming of age".
Members of the Club who comply with certain preconditions are extended the privilege to fly “The Blue” and the TMYC remains the only club on the non-tidal Thames with this honour.


Would appreciate any information
Royal Yachting Association

page 88 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems

St. Helier Yacht Club

St. Helier Yacht Club on Jersey, whose sailors helped evacuate Allied troops from nearby St. Malo as German forces advanced. As a reward, they were given the right to fly the rare defaced red ensign.

Royal Dart Yacht Club

Width : 230 cm - breadth : 151 cm
Image of the flag provided by Clay Moss with it shown behind merchandise for sale at club HQ

Royal Fowey Yacht Club
135cm x 65cm

Royal Lymington Yacht Club
36" by 16"

45inch in length and width 23inch with rope = 34 inch Makers mark- by Captain O.M. Watts ltd London. W.I.
 31 inches by 14 & a half inches

Royal Norfolk and Suffolk Yacht Club 
The Norfolk and Suffolk Yacht Club was granted a Red Ensign defaced with a crown and Prince of Wales feathers in February 1898. On 17 March 1898 the club applied to the Home Office for the right to add "Royal" to the club's name, adding that the club had been established for fifty years, had an Admiralty Warrant, and that its members had twelve yachts with a total tonnage of 470. The Home Office checked with the Admiralty who confirmed the warrant, but stated that they did not offer opinions on use of the title Royal. The application was laid before Queen Victoria on 3 May 1898, but refused on the grounds that the club was not sufficiently important.  In 1909 the Home Office found that ten yacht clubs that called themselves Royal, were doing so without authorisation; one was the Norfolk and Suffolk. When the matter was investigated it was found that the Admiralty had incorrectly made out the warrant to the Royal Norfolk and Suffolk Yacht Club. The Home Secretary then appears to have been approached personally, as the club claimed that Matthew Ridley had said "you have what you wanted." The club had therefore been using the title since June 1898. The Admiralty claimed that the Home Office had not told them that the title had been refused. The title was officially granted to the club on 18 May 1909.

Royal Victoria Yacht Club

West Mersea Yacht Club
92 CM X 42 CM
The badge consists of 3 seaaxes from the Essex coat-of-arms. The club's secretary verifies that the seaaxes should be placed in the ensign's lower fly quarter. Clay Moss

Lloyd's Yacht Club Ensign (Blue, Red and White)

According to the seller of the Lloyds Yacht Club 'LUTINE' Ensign and club Burgee on the right:
Hanging from my balcony
Left to me in the will of my good friend Lt Cdr D.V. Hunter VRD RNR (dcsd), for many years Commodore of Lloyds Yacht Club, (as in Lloyds of London, insurance),notice in the corner of the upper left section of the Cross of St George on both the Ensign and Burgee, there is a much smaller cross denoting rank of Commodore. There can be only one at any one time and this one stood for most of the 1970's. Cdr Hunter was for 9 years Skipper of "Lutine", a Camper Nicholson 43 sloop, named for the famous Lutine Bell which is still rung in the Lloyds building every time a ship sinks wherever it may be on the worlds oceans. This is of course a properly made, hand-stitched pair of flags with wooden, (oak), toggles and one is of no value without the other. Impossible to buy legally unless you are the permit holder, which is issued under warrant from HM Queen Elizabeth 11, there have been only four issued since WW2. The Ensign and Burgee may NOT be flown or worn by anyone other than those holding permits and is being sold for decorative purposes or to collectors only.
 36" by 60" apparently dating from the time of Dunkirk and with an astronomical shipping price of 145 pounds sterling.
Personal Collection: 3 yard flag (108" X 54")
51 inches high x 105 inches (nearly 9 feet) in length
An incorrect image of a supposed Lloyds flag as a red ensign was found in a series of Danish stickers issued by Danmark Coffee Co. (circa 1935). Ole Andersen

The Lloyd's badge on a blue disc on a Red Ensign is an error. It is perhaps a misinterpretation of the Admiralty Flag Book. Badges that appeared direct on Blue or Red Ensigns, but did not appear on UJs, were shown on a blue circle or red circle respectively. David Prothero

Blue EnsignLloyd's boats were entitled to fly a Blue Ensign with their badge: Admiralty Warrant 9th September 1882. This is now used only ashore at Lloyd's offices and occasionally at Gibraltar Signal Station. David Prothero
White Ensign
British Military Yacht Clubs
Royal Air Force Yacht Club

From page 86 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems
62cm x 27cm linen flag with a crowned eagle in the centre and union flag in the corner, complete with wood toggle and rope. The label reads ‘Captain O.M Watts Ltd, London W.1’ stamped ‘24’

Army Sailing Association Ensign
 With burgee
The ASA was formed in 1947 to manage sailing as a sport within the Army and to represent its interests at Service and national level.

Royal Artillery Yacht Club

Royal Armoured Corps Yacht Club
From page 86 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems

Household Division Yacht Club
From page 85 of Graham Bartram's British Flags & Emblems

RAF Sailing Association
32 by 20 inches (800 x 500 mm)
32 x 20 inches. 

Other British Organisations

RAF Marine Vessel Ensign

Sea Scouts Red Ensign

Training Ship Ensigns
Training Ship Foudroyant (Trincomalee)
Foudroyant, launched in 1793, was purchased from the Admiralty for use as a training ship, but wrecked in 1897. Trincomalee, a frigate built in Bombay, was bought to replace her, and renamed Foudroyant. She was moored, first in Falmouth, and then Milford Haven, before going to Portsmouth, where she was used in association with TS Implacable. Implacable was scrapped in 1949, but Foudroyant continued as a training ship until 1986. She was moved to Hartlepool for restoration and renamed Trincomalee in 1992. Foudroyant means Thunderer, so the badge is quite appropriate. David Prothero
Hartlepool Historic Quay, HMS Trincomalee 1817 (AKA, TS Foudroyant 1903 - 1986) is the second oldest warship afloat; only the USS Constitution is older. The video is of Trainees and Foudroyant Fair showing sail training and routine morning boat ashore Portsmouth Harbour, 1969

 Training Ship Indefatigable
HMS Conway
The video on right shows HMS Conway's ensign being raised on Remembrance Sunday 2007. The HMS Conway was a naval training school or "school ship", founded in 1859 and housed for most of its life aboard a 19th-century wooden battleship. The ship was originally stationed on the Mersey near Liverpool, then moved to the Menai Strait during World War II. While being towed back to Birkenhead for a refit in 1953, she ran aground and was wrecked, and later burned down. The school moved to purpose-built premises on Anglesey where it continued for another twenty years.
The Conway Ensign may still be flown; there are strict rules however. The yacht must be registered in Great Britain either under Part 1 of the Merchant Shipping Act or under the Small Ships Register. It must be owned by an ex Conway cadet. One must belong to The Conway Club Cruising Association (Annual subscription £5; Joining fee £10). One must fly the Conway Ensign and Burgee together. Full rules and Burgees are available from the Hon. Sec. Ensigns are available from the Ensign Flag Co. Ltd., Liverpool.

HMS Worcester and Old Worcesters Yacht Club Ensign
36 inches (920mm) long by 16 1/2 inches (420mm)
HMS Worcester was the London maritime interests' answer to HMS Conway which had been established in 1859 on the River Mersey as a training ship for Liverpool's burgeoning merchant fleet. Throughout their history Worcester and Conway were competitors, and the two met regularly on playing fields and in boats in keen sporting rivalry. 
Prince of Wales Sea Training School Society

An article about the Prince of Wales Sea Training School Society in "Lifeboat", the journal of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (the U.K. and Ireland sea rescue authority) notes that the School was founded in 1920 and closed in 1976. The article refers to the Society's website at and this has a page about their flag(s) at Although the flag is a defaced Red Ensign, the website refers to them as "colours", so I doubt whether this was actually an ensign for use afloat. These flags are silk. André Coutanche

Royal Hospital School
 The Royal Hospital School is the only school permitted to wear full Navy uniform and an Admiralty warranted Blue Ensign, defaced with the school coat of arms.

New defaced ensign awarded to The Reaper

The Courier announced "a new variety of the Red Ensign carrying a badge approved for use by ships in the National Register of Historic Vessels. There are actually two varieties. The most important historic ships will have a naval coronet above the badge it.
 There is a link to a pdf on the National Historic Ships site that sells the two versions; 245 quid for a 2yd flag and twenty quid more with the coronet. Sizes range from one to 5 yards.