Wiltshire Tourist Guide

Wiltshire Flag

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Like many other counties of England, Wiltshire did not have its own flag, until 05/06/07, when the new flag was accepted and raised at County Hall in Trowbridge.

For our design we have included some elements from the Wiltshire County Council flag - the green and white bars, which were probably first introduced to represent the green of the downs and escarpments, with the chalk underlay.

As a centre piece on this flag, we have The Great Bustard(Otis tarda). This previously extinct bird (since 1832 in England) is now the subject of a ten year breeding programme on Salisbury Plain, one of only two areas in Great Britain, in which it originally lived, and if the programme is a success, it will be a milestone, as this is the first ever attempt to re-introduce a nationally extinct species in the UK. In addition it is the heaviest flying bird in the world. As a matter of interest this year, 2009, for the first time since the release of Great Bustards on Salisbury Plain at least three chicks in two nests have hatched.

The construction of the flag has the male bird reproduced in gold standing on a solid green background, to illustrate the open grassland that is its favoured habitat; surrounded by a circle of six rocks, which in heraldic symbolism expresses “Safety, refuge and protection”, and is known as a roundel.

The flags first high profile public appearance was at the National Town Criers competition in Trowbridge (June 07) and the West Wilts Show (July 07).

Wiltshire flags are becoming popular with campers, caravanners and people attending concerts and other outdoor events, as a means of identifying the county from which they hail. There has also been a lot of interest from the expatriate community and has been flown in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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