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Barra, Scotland


Last modified: 2017-12-25 by rob raeside
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[Flag of Barra] image by by Sam MacNeil

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Description of the flag

I received the following message from Scott Hatton:

The Barra flag, more obviously a Nordic cross, is in green and white probably reflecting the Catholic heritage as well.

Chris Pinette, 23 March 1998

From the Aberdeen Press and Journal:

Barra residents could launch a campaign to secure official recognition for the island’s flag in the coming weeks. Community leaders and Western Isles MSP Alasdair Allan have proposed a petition to the Court of the Lord Lyon to secure the special status for the first time. The move gained widespread support from islanders after being discussed at a recent meeting in Barra.

The green and white Scandinavian-style flag has long been used to represent the island, but does not yet have legal recognition. The Court of the Lord Lyon, the legal authority on heraldry in Scotland, has the power to authorise community flags and ensure that only one group can use the design.

Mr Allan said: “It is great to see the local community in Barra showing interest in this idea. “Ultimately, it’s up to the people of Barra themselves what they want to do next. The feeling at the initial meeting that I hosted earlier this month was that recognition of the flag would help boost the island’s marketing efforts as well as celebrate its unique identity. There is already widespread use of Barra’s flag, which can be seen flying from fishing boats, on local produce and on car stickers. I look forward to seeing how people in Barra want to take this forward, and hope it will lead to a formal petition being made to the Lord Lyon. I believe Barra’s flag can help boost the area’s identity and economy.”

Phillip Tibbetts, community vexillologist at the Flag Institute, said: “It was an honour to visit Barra and talk about the benefits and process of recording a flag officially with the Lyon Court. I was very pleased the idea was received so positively and look forward to supporting further progress. I can’t wait to be back – and no doubt see an officially registered Barra flag flying.”

David Phillips, 4 January 2017

It was reported yesterday that the unofficial flag of the island of Barra, which has been used for some years past, has now been officially recognised by the Lord Lyon. The flag, as you will know, is a white Scandinavian cross on a green background. The press reports quote a representative of the Flag Institute.
Kenneth Fraser, 24 November 2017

Further details are are at
The distinctive green-and-white Nordic cross has been widely used on the island for decades, but until now has had no legal recognition. Having been championed locally, the project gained significance after Eilidh MacLeod, 14, of the island, was killed in the Ariana Grande concert blast. The announcement comes six months after the attack that left 22 dead.
The flag was draped over Eilidh’s coffin when her body was repatriated to the island for her funeral. - The National

See also - BBC News, 23 November 2017 - The Scotsman, 23 November 2017
Ivan Sache, 24 November 2017