Flag of Birmingham (England)

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City of Birmingham
Birmingham City Flag.svg
Adopted 23 July 2015
Design Golden vertical zig-zag offset to hoist dividing blue and red, with a bull's head in the centre.
Designed by Thomas Keogh
David Smith

The flag of Birmingham is the flag of the city of Birmingham in England. A flag for the city that is freely flyable by the community was adopted following a public competition in 2015. The pre-existing heraldic flag is flown exclusively by Birmingham City Council and the new flag is for use by the public.[1]

City Flag[edit]

A competition to design a new flag for public use was held during early 2015 with 470 proposed designs being entered into the competition. The successful entry was announced on 23 July 2015 and was designed by 11 year old Thomas Keogh and David Smith. The new flag takes the form of a yellow bull's head, recalling Birmingham's Bullring, placed on a red field with an abstract yellow letter "B" on blue at the hoist which, when placed on its side, takes the form of the Roman numeral "M" (1000) representing the title "City of a Thousand Trades" which has been applied to Birmingham previously.[2]

Council banner[edit]

The Birmingham council banner

Adapted as a banner of arms from the coat of arms of Birmingham, it was adopted in its current form in 1977, reflecting the city's new status as a metropolitan borough and its expansion to include Sutton Coldfield as a result of the Local Government Act 1972.

The council flag has four quarters, the top left and bottom right each having a diagonal band of five yellow diamonds against a blue background, the top right and bottom left being divided vertically with a zig-zag line between a yellow left-hand side and a red right-hand side. These heraldic devices come from the arms of the de Birmingham family,[3] who first established Birmingham as a market town and borough in the 12th century.[4] Superimposed on the quartering is a cross of ermine – the ermine coming from the arms of the Calthorpe family who were Lords of the Manor of Edgbaston, which was absorbed by the new municipal borough of Birmingham in 1832; the cross coming from the arms of the town of Sutton Coldfield, which the city absorbed in 1974.[3] At the centre of the cross a mitre represents John Vesey, who restored the fortunes of Sutton Coldfield in the 16th century as Bishop of Exeter.[3]


The council banner flown over Birmingham Town Hall.

The council flag flies daily from public buildings within the city of Birmingham, including the Council House and the Town Hall in Victoria Square.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Elkes, Neil (23 July 2015). "Bully For Birmingham: People's Flag Competition Announced".
  2. ^ The UK Flag Registry: Birmingham, Warwickshire
  3. ^ a b c d Dobson, Colin (2006-12-31). "Birmingham, England". Flags of the World. Retrieved 2012-10-13.
  4. ^ Demidowicz, George (2008). Medieval Birmingham: the borough rentals of 1296 and 1344-5. Dugdale Society Occasional Papers. Startford-upon-Avon: The Dugdale Society, in association with the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. p. 31. ISBN 0-85220-090-0.