Talk:Northern Ireland flags issue

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February 2006[edit]

Where did you get the information on the proposed alternatives from? I've seen the news clip with the 3 suggestions from Alliance, but have never heard of this one supposedly being considered by the UK government - do you have a source for this?

Also, the Cross of St Patrick defaced with the star and hand has never been flown at any Northern Ireland matches I've been to as shown. There is often a similar one [1] which is green in the left and right segments.

Admittedly, the defaced St. Patrick flag is rare at football matches, however, I have witnessed it a couple of times. A good example of it being seen is in rugby - dig up any old TV footage of Ulster winning the European cup in 1999, and there are quite a few of these flags in the TV pictures.
Jonto 19:34, 23 February 2006 (UTC)
Sorry I didn't sign that above. Still new at this logging in lark. Anyway, I'll take your word for it, though all I can remember is the sea of white Ulster flags. I think the defaced St Patrick's cross would be my preference to be honest, but I've never actually seen one - I did nearly resort to making one at one point, just as an example - couldn't find the emblem for the middle though.
Beano ni 21:27, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

Other flags[edit]

I've seen in Northern Ireland a few times that nationalist communities sometimes fly the Palestinian flag, and in reply the Unionists will fly the Israeli flag. It would be great to get a photo of this. Seabhcán 09:27, 6 March 2006 (UTC)

I don't think that really falls under the rubric of this article, but it is an interesting subject, now that you mention it.
Here are a few pics I found through Google Image Search,,4,#palestine.jpg
I was always under the impression that the support for Zionism among Unionists was in reaction to the Republicans.
The IRA did received funding/arms shipments from Libya, and training from the PLO/Fatah and Syria, if I'm not mistaken.
But other than that, I think a lot of the support stems from their shared beliefs.
The Provisional IRA, while not normally assciated with Marxism-like the Official IRA, or the INLA-still has a lot of residual socialism and Marxism in their political doctrine.

Ruthfulbarbarity 22:01, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

I saw a flag behind the goal line at the NI vs Iceland match on 02/09/06. It was based on the Union Jack, but had the red replaced by green. Does anyone now what this flag's origin is, and whether it should be included in this article?

-- 10:25, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

Flag of Northern Ireland2.svg
Do you mean this flag? I'm afraid I don't know where it comes from or what it means. Maybe User:Keithgreer knows as he sometimes uses it in his signature. --Hroðulf (or Hrothulf) (Talk) 13:05, 3 October 2006 (UTC)
Also see this:
--Hroðulf (or Hrothulf) (Talk) 13:27, 3 October 2006 (UTC)
Yes, that's the one. I read from the 'flagspot' site that the Union Jack sometimes has it's colours change to show affiliation with a particular football team. If that is the case here, I don't imagine it should be included.
-- 07:44, 4 October 2006 (UTC)
It seems likely that the flag adopts the green and white colours of the IFA Northern Ireland national football team (and the blue away colour.) So the flag is interesting but I agree that it doesn't belong in Northern Ireland flags issue. Maybe Keith, who, I think, introduced the flag to Wikipedia, can confirm. Either way, you might appreciate his we're not Brazil userbox --Hroðulf (or Hrothulf) (Talk) 09:22, 4 October 2006 (UTC)
Sorry for the lack of reply so far, back at University. I the initial PNG after seeing it at a Northern Ireland football match. I don't think it needs to be included here, it would possibly open the flood gates to every other sport team flags.  Keithology  "Talk"  09:24, 6 October 2006 (UTC)
I was inspired by the blue and green Jack above to try other versions just to satisfy my curiosity. I doubt if they will ever catch on with anyone:
Flag of Northern Ireland3.svg
Flag of Northern Ireland4.svg
Ischium (talk) 09:23, 6 October 2010 (UTC)

SVG, SVG, SVG!!![edit]

It would be really nice to get these flag images as SVG. - Thanks, Hoshie | 06:09, 12 March 2006 (UTC)

I concur. —Nightstallion (?) 11:44, 17 July 2006 (UTC)
Saint Patrick's flag for Northern Ireland.svg

DONE! Well, one anyway. I've uploaded an SVG of the St Patrick's Cross based flag. How's that for a first SVG? I can't replace it yet because my Commons account is too new, however I'm thinking I might thicken the line around the star as it appears to fade quite badly at low resolutions. beano 16:20, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

Beano, well done I think you need to darken the line around the star rather then thicken it.--padraig3uk 16:28, 19 April 2007 (UTC)
I think the line already is black - just that it is also very thin, and at small dimensions appears grey, therefore does need thickened. I think that the red also needs darkened slightly. Jonto 17:16, 19 April 2007 (UTC)
If you look at it full size it appears more gray then black.--padraig3uk 17:18, 19 April 2007 (UTC)
If you view the source (be warned, it's messy) or edit the image in Inkscape it already is black. When I increse the thickness it does look a lot more clear. I'll upload the new one as soon as my commons account is old enough (3 more days) and only then introduce it to the main article. beano 17:32, 19 April 2007 (UTC)
Follow-up: That's the new one uploaded now (you might need to refresh). It looks a bit better I think. Not sure whether to add this one or thicken up the line even more. Anyone any preference? beano 20:55, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
I think that looks fine now, well done.--padraig3uk 20:59, 27 April 2007 (UTC)


I'm against merging this into the main article. —Nightstallion (?) 11:44, 17 July 2006 (UTC)

Me too! NotMuchToSay 18:11, 25 July 2006 (UTC)

I would be of the opinion that both articles are substantial enough, on their on merits, without too much crossover. I would also be against the merger.  <font="center" color="#FFFFFF"> theKeith  Talk!  18:49, 25 July 2006 (UTC)

Since there seems to be no desire to merge the articles, I'll remove the proposal from the top of the page. It's been up there about 10 days, so I think that has been long enough to gather opinion. NotMuchToSay 14:24, 26 July 2006 (UTC)

Star of David[edit]

Could someone explain the 'Star of David' objections, as I've never heard that before. Surely the 6-pointed star only represents the 6 counties of Northern Ireland. Is this anti-semitic idea? --Indisciplined 22:06, 7 August 2006 (UTC)

I don't believe that that star on the NI flag has anything to do with the Star of David, but there are some people who seem to believe otherwise. This misconception isn't helped by the fact that some Loyalists fly the Israeli flag! Some protestants apparently believe that the Protestants of Ulster descend from the "Lost Tribe of Isreal", though I'm not entirely sure what that is.

Personally I don't think the Israeli references have a place on this page, but others disagree

NotMuchToSay 10:12, 25 August 2006 (UTC)

Unofficial flag of the Ulster Nation[edit]

Flag of the Ulster Nation.svg

I made the unofficial flag of the Ulster Nation proposed by the Ulster seperatists. I think this flag should be added in the article, but I have few information about it (see also: [2][3]). —Yes0song 18:01, 30 August 2006 (UTC)

The flag is included in the photo Image:NI murals Freedom Corner.jpg. —Yes0song 18:30, 30 August 2006 (UTC)
It should probably be included. I notice that the thumb is closed against the palm in the photo by the way. Can you make the change to it? --Mal 03:46, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
Flag of the Ulster Nation (thumb closed).svg
I made a 'thumb-closed' version of the flag. The hand in the new picture was from Image:Flag of Ulster.svg. —Yes0song 15:06, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
I don't think it matters whether this one is open or closed - I think it looks better open, but IMO best for all the red hand images would probably have the thumb half-way open, as there seems to be no sources on any of this open vs. closed thumb issue! Jonto
I read somewhere, but I don't remember where, that the thumb was closed on the old provincial flag but open on the Northern Ireland flag (backed up by the images in Wikipedia). Since the Ulster Nation movement grew out of disaffected unionists, I'd imagine the thumb on those flags was from the Northern Ireland flag - open. But just a guess really. beano 21:09, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

Paramilitary Flags[edit]

There has been much dispute in Northern Ireland over the flying of paramilitary flags (mainly loyalist) particularly during the marching season. Should they be mentioned here? Lucas42 17:38, 6 January 2007 (UTC)

When I set up this page I intended it to show flags which have been used to represent Northern Ireland as a whole (with the possible inclusion of the Republic or Great Britain). I don't think the flags of illegal paramilitary organisations should be here - nor do I think that flags for institutions such as the Royal Irish Regiment the Irish Football Association or the GAA should be here either. Of course, as this is Wikipedia, if there is a consensus that this page should encompass other flags, then maybe we should change things. NotMuchToSay 16:20, 14 January 2007 (UTC)

I think this article should be kept for flags which have/could represent Northern Ireland. But it would be interesting to have an article about the sensitivities about flags, especially paramilitary ones. Maybe it could be expanded to include murals and such. « Keith t/e» 16:35, 14 January 2007 (UTC)

coat of arms?[edit]

I'm not sure if this is right, but should the "Northern Ireland coat of arms" be on this page? It is not actually a flag, so I'm not sure where it comes into the flag issue. --Chickenfeed9 21:01, 12 April 2007 (UTC)

Probably not as its not a flag.--Vintagekits 21:02, 12 April 2007 (UTC)
The Flag was derived from the coat of Arms, so in that sense they are connected, so it does no harm to include it in the article.--padraig3uk 21:06, 12 April 2007 (UTC)


Rather than putting about a dozen {{cn}} tags on this, I added the general tag at the top. Needs much more referencing. Patricularly for claims like "This flag is often flown by loyalists and in many republican minds has become associated with loyalist paramilitaries" or "The flying of the Irish Tricolour by nationalists in Northern Ireland on St Patrick's Day is particularly controversial as Saint Patrick represents all the people and all of the island, not just the Republic of Ireland or its citizens". Stu ’Bout ye! 13:06, 13 April 2007 (UTC)


This user is edit warring on this article, removing relevent information, he refuses to engage in discussion on talkpages.--padraig3uk 22:04, 27 June 2007 (UTC)

Rather than complain about the user, why not make suggestions here towards improving the article? --John 04:22, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
This user has refused to discuss changes in the talk page of this and other articles and templates that he has edit warred on dispite many requests to do so, I have even left messages on his talk page which he ignores, he has removed relevent information from articles that don't suit his POV.--padraig3uk 04:46, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Sports uses[edit]

My removal of the word some from the paragraph on the Ulster Banner was removed with the edit summary "many sports organisation don't use it". I can't think of any Northern Irish sports organisations that don't use it offhand, can anyone else? --John 04:11, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Well you could start with the GAA.--padraig3uk 04:20, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
Aren't they an all-Ireland body? --John 04:27, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
So is the rugby team but they still don't use the UB either, which is why the word some was in the text as not every sports organisation uses the UB.--padraig3uk 04:36, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
You seem confused. We were talking about sports organisations representing Northern Ireland. I don't think either of your examples really works there, correct me if I'm wrong. --John 04:59, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Well outside of the NI soccer team, only the Olympic and commonwealth game teams do use it.--padraig3uk 05:04, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Uh huh. So which were the Northern Ireland sports teams that don't use it again? --John 05:06, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
There are many sporting organisations that don't use the UB. I am not a sports fan myself, other editors would be better at giving examples of those that don't.--padraig3uk 05:19, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
Pending the arrival of these other editors, I'll remove some again. --John 14:07, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
I disagree removing it gives the false impression that all sports teams use the Ulster banner which is not the case.--padraig3uk 14:12, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
Well, it should be easy enough for you to find some of the "many sports organisation" which don't use it. Until then, I think it is fine the way it is. --John 14:18, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
You are the one claiming that all sports teams do, as your wording now implies, so it is upto you to prove that claim, so ontil then please revert your edit until then.--padraig3uk 14:22, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

I'm disappointed you have replaced false information that you were unable to source when I challenged you. --John 14:50, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

If you think its false then prove it, your wording implied that ALL sports teams used the Ulster Banner.--padraig3uk 14:57, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
Which is, I believe, the truth. You reverted me with the edit summary "many sports organisation don't use it". I asked you to name some. You blustered and flustered and named some all-Ireland sports teams (a good clue that you don't know the first thing about the subject) but were unable to come up with any actual names, eventually saying "I am not a sports fan myself, other editors would be better at giving examples of those that don't". But you still want "your" version to prevail. I am deeply disappointed at your uncooperative behaviour. This is a microcosm of all the crap we have on NI-related articles, because of POV-warriors like yourself fighting over every damn word even when you're wrong. I will not edit-war as that is not my style and this one word is not important enough (at least not to me). Good luck. --John 15:42, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
I've updated to: "its use by sports teams representing Northern Ireland". That doesn't say all or some. If anyone can prove it is only 'some' they can amend that line. beano 16:58, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Ulster Banner v Flag of Ireland[edit]

Can editors please leave the order of the sections alone, this article deals with flags in use and used by the Northern Ireland state, therefore the section on the Ulster Banner as the former flag of the government between 1921-72 should come just after the main section dealing with current official flags. The Irish Tricolour then is shown after that.--padraig3uk 07:35, 11 July 2007 (UTC)

I must say I'm disappointed that some users resort to a POV push by moving the Tricolour to 'other flags'. The tricolour is not just another flag, it is used by the nationalist community in the six counties. It should be given prominence under the union flag, which has legal weight in the six counties. The tricolour is more important than the old governmental flag which is now defunct. Diarmaid 8:30, 11 July 2007 (UTC)

I have answered that above.--padraig3uk 07:36, 11 July 2007 (UTC)
for perhaps the first time ever, I agree with Padraig.Traditional unionist 19:11, 11 July 2007 (UTC)
The title is 'Northern Ireland flag issue,' not 'flags in use.' And even if it were 'flags in use' then the Irish flag would feature dominantly also. Diarmaid 12:41, 12 July 2007 (UTC)
Diarmaid, the Tricolour does feature in the article.--padraig3uk 08:04, 13 July 2007 (UTC)
Yes, but pushing it down to 'other flags' is misleading especially since it partly forms the core of the flags issue. This is an article about the flags issue, not about official governmental flags! Diarmaid 14:13, 15 July 2007 (UTC)
There is no consensus for the changes you are trying to make, put your case here first and if you can get consensus then the changes can be made, but up to this point no other editor has agreed with you on this, edit warring on the issue will not resolve it.--padraig3uk 14:13, 15 July 2007 (UTC)
Padraig. The article is about the North's flag issue, which, as the article itself states, "is one that divides the population along sectarian lines. Depending on political allegiance, people identify with differing flags and symbols, some of which have, or have had, official status in the province." Why then a whole lot of union flags at the top of the page, if the objective is to point out the use of the main flags that ARE in use??? What use mentioning former government flags at all? I think editors are getting this article and 'Flag of Northern Ireland' articles mixed up!! I suspect a unionist POV push. Diarmaid 01:09, 16 July 2007 (UTC)

Diarmaid, the reason for the order is that the flags are listed in order of relevance. ie, Union Flag and Assemby emblem first as they are the current official flags, then the Ulster Banner, Coat of Arms and Cross of St Patrick as they are all former official flags, the other flags which includes the Tricolour and the other flags which have never been official. This is exactly the order that should be in place. Stu ’Bout ye! 09:43, 16 July 2007 (UTC)

Again, this is not an article about former/current official flags, it is an article about the flags issue. Diarmaid 16:43, 16 July 2007 (UTC)
And? Given their past/current official status, the UF, UB, Assembly logo and Cross of Saint Patrick are more important and relevant than the Tricolour. Therefore they are listed first. Stu ’Bout ye! 16:05, 16 July 2007 (UTC)
Correct. When I created this page, it was designed to encapsulate the issue, but in a way that refers to all the flags the are part of "the issue". The issue in question surrounds the flags and emblems with which people identify with, but it makes sense to deal first with current official flags and emblems, then former Northern Ireland flags and emblems, then others. You could argue that the flag of the Republic of Ireland should go right at the bottom with the flag of St Andrew, as neither relate to Northern Ireland, but given the fact that many nationalists identify with it, it makes sense to put it at the top of the list of flags which have never had any offical status in Northern Ireland, but below those which have. NotMuchToSay 20:05, 16 July 2007 (UTC)
The 'flag of Northern Ireland' article should deal with official flags. This article is about the flags issue. Saying that "the flag of the Republic of Ireland should go right at the bottom with the flag of St Andrew, as neither relate to Northern Ireland" is a POV push considering almost half of the population identify with it, not to mention a national majority. Diarmaid 01:13, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
'almost half' is pushing it and describing the island as a 'national' majority sounds more than a bit partisan to me. To put a foreign non- Northern Ireland flag above the only flag to have ever officially and uniquely represented Northern Ireland is quite ridiculous! Jonto 00:14, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
Tell me, which flag does the majority of unionists in the six counties feel best aligned with? Which flag do nationalists best align with? This is at the heart of the flags issue and I'm trying to find a common ground. Some authors feel it necessary to diminish the status of the Irish flag, so why not sidestep the controversy, and represent the flags issue properly by displaying both together? Diarmaid 02:32, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
No one is trying to diminish the status of the Tricolour, we are putting it in proper context, as an "other" flag which has never had any official status in NI, and therefore should be less prominant. Stu ’Bout ye! 07:55, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
That is for the 'flag of Northern Ireland' topic. This topic is 'Northern Ireland flags *issue*,' where the tricolour features as key player that exact issue. Official status of flags is not a major subject in the article, although it's worthwhile mentioning which community's flags do have or have had official status in the past, as has been done. Diarmaid 09:05, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
Is is about the issue - and what is official or unofficial is the whole point. The way it was (and the way I created this page) is the best. NotMuchToSay 17:09, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
No, the issue of displaying flags is the whole point. Unionists can argue til the cows come home to try and diminish the status of the tricolour, but it will not happen. Might as well try to find the middle ground, without resorting to POV. Diarmaid 01:18, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

So, to sum up Diarmaid, not one editor agrees with your view, but you are right so thats the way it will be?Traditional unionist 07:53, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

To sum it up, one editor does not disagree, the others are unionist hacks who would put their own POV before representing the issue fairly and equally. Has ever been thus. Why not follow the D'Hondt system of representation as per GFA? ;) Diarmaid 08:15, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
So you accept that you have no consensus and are engaging in an edit war on your own?Traditional unionist 08:23, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
What I accept is that there is a gross POV push on this topic - the Irish flag is three places down now and you're still complaining? Diarmaid 09:18, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
But you acknowledge that there is no support for your position?Traditional unionist 10:48, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

I dont think its right to say that Diarmaid has no support or otherwise for his position, he has made a valid point that this article deals solely with the issue of flags used in Northern Ireland, Therefore the main flags used by both sections of the population to represent them should have equal priority over other flags such as the St Patricks flag and provincial flags, etc. The Union Flag should be first in that order as it is the only recognised official flag, then the Ulster Banner and Tricolour, with the rest in a seperate section or sections as necessary. Maybe it would be better if we can agree a format here for the layout, without resorting to an edit war on the article itself. I propose these sections:

  • Official Flag section - contains only the Union Flag.
  • Flags used by the two communities section - contains the Ulster Banner and Tricolour only.
  • Other flags section. St Patricks, provincial flags, Ulster Independence flag etc
  • Suggested Replacement section.

This is just as suggestion, if editors have others please list them here.--padraig3uk 11:11, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

I'm not sure an 'official flag section' is useful for this particular article - we already have this section under 'flag of Northern Ireland'. This article deals with the issue of displaying flags, and the description of the union flag already states that it's the only recognised official flag in the six counties. Otherwise good idea for a layout. I also like how the coat of arms is incorporated into the Ulster Banner section instead of floating around on its own. Diarmaid 12:34, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
Diarmaid, you have to remember that not everyone that comes across this article would be aware that the Union Flag is the only recognised official flag for Northern Ireland, therefore it is necessary to make that clear from the start, before discussing the other issue of flags used by Unionists and Nationalists.--padraig3uk 14:51, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps then have the union flag title containing 'official flag,' like the Ulster Banner has 'former official flag'? Diarmaid 15:26, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
Like [4]? beano 01:43, 20 July 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, except under 'prominent flags' heading or similar to put all three in context. Diarmaid 09:00, 20 July 2007 (UTC)

Only flag?[edit]

This article states

'Union Jack, is the only official flag currently used on governmental buildings in Northern Ireland

The supporting reference states:

  • On the occasion of a visit to a government building by Her Majesty the Queen, the Royal Standard shall be flown at that building.
  • ... has more than one flag pole, the national flag of the country of the visiting Head of State may also be flown at that building'

Is it just me, or is there a contradiction there? The Fashion Icon 15:17, 1 September 2007 (UTC)

No in normal use the Union Flag is the only official flag that can be flown from government buildings except on the rare occasion of an Royal visit. Even with that the Union Flag is only flown on a set number of days in the year.--padraig 19:49, 1 September 2007 (UTC)
Even in this comment Padraig, there is a contradiction. Yes the fashion icon, you are right.Traditional unionist 00:21, 2 September 2007 (UTC)

Good evening, I am new to this site and would like to recommend a change be made to the wording used regarding the Irish Tri colour. The words state that the Irish Tri colour is flown to show support to a United Ireland. If this was the case, it is a significant contradiction in that the Irish Tri colour is not a flag for all of Ireland, it is the flag of the Republic of Ireland. Therefore, the Tri colour is flown to show support to Republicism, not an United Ireland. Can this be changed please. (27.09.07 - MJMCA) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Mjmca (talkcontribs) 16:03, 27 September 2007 (UTC)

Merger proposal[edit]

Given that there is considerable cross-over between the Northern Ireland flags issue page and the Flag of Northern Ireland page, I propose that these pages be merged. The Ulster Banner page now exists to cover the actual NI flag, anyway.

NotMuchToSay 14:34, 27 September 2007 (UTC)

I am new to this site and would like to recommend a change be made to the wording used regarding the Irish Tri colour. The words state that the Irish Tri colour is flown to show support to a United Ireland. If this was the case, it is a significant contradiction in that the Irish Tri colour is not a flag for all of Ireland, it is the flag of the Republic of Ireland. Therefore, the Tri colour is flown to show support to Republicism, not an United Ireland. Can this be changed please. (27.09.07 - MJMCA)

Unfortunately, your summizing above is inaccurate. Firstly if you look into the history of the tricolour, it was designed by Irish Nationalists (NOT republicans) to bring unity among the peoples of Ireland (peace between the orange and green), and independence from the UK. This flag has been adapted by the area of Ireland which has gained independence, but is not exclusively representitive to that area alone! This is why Irish Nationalism in Northern Ireland use the flag, to show their support for a unified and independent Ireland. Yes Republicans use the flag also, as does Nationalists, Americans, Canadians, Sewdish etc. when they thinjk of Ireland. They are not all republicans neither. Please note the difference between Republicanism and Nationalism before stating the above. --  RÓNÁN   "Caint / Talk"  14:46, 27 January 2008 (UTC)

I am against the merger proposal of the NI Flags issue article with the Flag of Northern Ireland page as the issues arising in this article may overshadow the default information that users may expect to find in the Flag of Northern Ireland article. --  RÓNÁN   "Caint / Talk"  21:57, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

I am a young man from ulster and i believe in nothern ireland we should have a flag. should we not have a flag we are all proud to call our own and one that is already labelled!


Maybe someone from this article can give some useful input to this thread Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Football#Ireland regarding the Flag (if any) used by the Ireland scoccer team. Fasach Nua (talk) 22:45, 18 November 2007 (UTC)

Jeffrey Donaldson MP - "The union flag is the flag of Northern Ireland"[edit]

For your information, a quote from today's Irish Times. --Mais oui! (talk) 07:31, 31 July 2009 (UTC)

The point being?--Vintagekits (talk) 08:23, 31 July 2009 (UTC)
For your information, a quote from the Prime Minister's Spokesman says "The position in relation to Northern Ireland was that it did not have a national flag". The Union Flag is the flag of the United Kingdom which includes Northern Ireland, it is not the flag of Northern Ireland itself. O Fenian (talk) 09:02, 31 July 2009 (UTC)

RFC - Use of the Ulster Banner in Darts articles[edit]

Should Darts articles use the Ulster Banner to represent players from Northern Ireland? See the discussion here Bjmullan (talk) 23:33, 20 May 2011 (UTC)

Separatist flag under the Unionist heading[edit]

Surely not? Surely separatism is just that, separate? Description mentions not wishing to be part of the UK. So not Unionism. Suggest someone put it under another heading. Will not get into petty squabbles as above about what that heading should be. (talk) 03:03, 7 July 2012 (UTC)

Removing virtually all content[edit]

The version as of 25 April 2013 says virtually nothing about any issue around flags in Northern Ireland. There has never been any dispute around sunbursts, starry ploughs, four provinces flags or "sporting" flags. I am removing all of that and replacing it with a very short article describing two or three real-life issues. Interested parties are invited to expand. Scolaire (talk) 08:19, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Daring. I support the principle, but I would prefer that some of the excised content found its way into Flag of Northern Ireland and/or List of flags used in Northern Ireland. Brocach (talk) 11:40, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
I've undone the bold edit. I agree, some of the flags are probably not needed in the article, but others, e.g. the Union Flag, Ulster Banner etc, most certainly do belong in the article. Let's get some consensus here. The Roman Candle (talk) 15:31, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
I'm adding back the stuff about the actual flags issue that was removed when just sticking in the list of flags. I think both can be there and the flags should be ones involved in the flags issue rather than this being a copy of the list of flags used in Northern Ireland. I can't see why the independent Ulster one was removed so I'll stick it back in again if we're having that list. Dmcq (talk) 14:35, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
Good. So now we have some factual content about the issue, and we have (I think) general agreement that a lot of the rest is surplus to rquirements and could go. So the two questions are: what can be removed and who is bold enough to remove it? Scolaire (talk) 19:06, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
So you and Brocach want the flag of Ireland shown as a flag of Northern Ireland in that article, but you want most or all of the flags removed from this article, is that correct? You see little difference between the topics of Flag of Northern Ireland and List of flags used in Northern Ireland? Would it be okay to merge them in your opinion? Dmcq (talk) 12:06, 5 May 2013 (UTC)
I voted for the image of the flag of Ireland to be retained in that article. I never said I wanted it to be shown "as a flag of Northern Ireland". In any event, this is not the appropriate place to discuss a different article (or two different articles). As regards removing images from this article, yes, I think most of them should go. What's needed first, though, is a proper discussion of what this article is. What is the "flags issue"? What has been published specifically about the "issue" in reliable sources? How much of the current content represents undue weight, and how much is just cruft ("St Andrew was one of the Apostles of Jesus Christ and the flag is said to have been inspired by a white cross of cloud appearing on a blue sky to a Scottish King preparing for battle", for instance)? When we have some clear idea what the article is about, we can begin to think about what images are appropriate. Personally, I don't see that many, if any, flags are "at issue" beyond the Union flag, the Ulster banner and the flag of Ireland. Scolaire (talk) 17:41, 5 May 2013 (UTC)
As regards your merging question, I see little difference between most of this article and List of flags used in Northern Ireland. The images and descriptions of flags that are not verifiably part of the "flags issue", however we end up defining that, could be merged into the list. Scolaire (talk) 18:17, 5 May 2013 (UTC)
I certainly think the descriptions of the flags could be removed from this article, I think I'll go and remove tht for starters as having nothing much to do with the topic. Dmcq (talk) 14:34, 6 May 2013 (UTC)
Well I did a bit of chopping down. I removed much of the flag descriptions and reduced the size of the pictures as the article is not about the flags themselves, they just illustrate the groups. I've removed the flags sen as neutral and moved the proposed flags to the Flag of Northern Ireland article as that bit is about possible new flags for Northern Ireland rather than the flags issue. Dmcq (talk) 15:00, 6 May 2013 (UTC)
Good work! That was well worth doing. One small thing: I tagged the "proposed flag" section with a view to deleting it quite soon unless somebody edited it, as it completely failed WP:V; I have now deleted it from Flag of Northern Ireland for the same reason. Scolaire (talk) 18:13, 6 May 2013 (UTC)
I've done a couple more edits to this article as well. Scolaire (talk) 18:24, 6 May 2013 (UTC)
Well I have to say, those smaller flags look utterly stupid and I suggest normal sized ones are put back. I think the overall problem we have here spans several articles: Flag of Northern Ireland, Flag of Ireland, Northern Ireland flags issue and List of flags of Ireland. Here's my suggestion: the Flag of Northern Ireland article should be trimmed back to contain just the official/semi official flags. This would leave the Union Flag and the St Pat saltire. None of the other flags in that article are now representative of Northern Ireland, many have never been, so they could safely be removed. Perhaps the Banner could stay, in a section on history, but the rest should go. Next, Flag of Ireland - leave it largely as-is but rename it to Flag of the Republic of Ireland for the avoidance of doubt and for clarity. For the Northern Ireland flags issue we should concentrate on the flags currently seen on the streets of Northern Ireland, so that would be the Union Flag, the Tricolour, and maybe the Banner; get rid of all the historical dross and proposals for new flags etc. The article should concentrate on the 'issues' as much as the flags. Put the images in full size and put some photos in as well. Finally, the list of flags article should feature flags from the whole island, as appropriate. This would cover all current and historical flags, back as far as anyone cares to go. The Roman Candle (talk) 18:22, 6 May 2013 (UTC)
"For the Northern Ireland flags issue we should concentrate on the flags currently seen on the streets of Northern Ireland, so that would be the Union Flag, the Tricolour, and maybe the Banner; get rid of all the historical dross and proposals for new flags etc." I absolutely agree with you on this. Having got rid of the "historical dross", however, I would like to see somebody write some real history. Surely 1964 and 2012 can't be the only instances of trouble? Otherwise there wouldn't be an "issue". On your suggestions for other articles, I have no comment to make. I suggest you take them up on the relevant talk pages. Scolaire (talk) 18:31, 6 May 2013 (UTC)
But why take up the issues on those other talk pages? To me it's a single issue and the discussion is getting fragmented. Maybe this Talk page is not the best place, but the discussion does need to be co-ordinated in a single place. The Roman Candle (talk) 18:35, 6 May 2013 (UTC)
One group of people can't make decisions on this page about other articles, that editors of other articles aren't a party to. My only concern right now is to make this into an article that informs readers about something. I don't want to be prevented from improving this article because there's a centralised discussion going on somewhere. Scolaire (talk) 20:15, 6 May 2013 (UTC)
This article isn't about the flags, it is about the issues about the flags. That's why I cut down on the flags, they are really used here as icons for the various groups who use them as part of their identity. They're not here so one can appreciate the details of the flags, that for the flags articles. That's the same reason i tried to cut down on the waffle about the designs.
The flag of Northern Ireland has an RfC on it about the Irish flag.
The guideline in IMOS seems quite clear to me, Flag of Ireland is about a political entity so we should just say Ireland unless there is a clear reason for confusion. Flags are typically a political not a geographical thing.
The List of flags of Ireland is a bit of an anomaly as far as its name is concerned as it covers the whole island, but really I can't see it as something to fuss over it. There's no need to write an essay in the title and I can't see any point in having separate lists for the various sections. Dmcq (talk) 21:41, 6 May 2013 (UTC)

Removing a lot of the content[edit]

I have zapped the St. Andrew's Cross, since no reference was provided. I propose next to remove the Sunburst, the Starry Plough and the Ulster Nation flag. Those sections (also unreferenced) do not say in what way the flags are part of the "flags issue", only that they are "used" (which I assume means diplayed) by this or that group. Well, so what? I don't doubt that Palestinian flags and Basque flags are also displayed by some political groups, but presumably nobody would consider adding them. After that, I propose to remove the section headings. Since this is not a "List of flags used in Northern Ireland", there is no reason to present them in list form. Removing the list format will allow the article to be re-arranged so that unionist flags and nationalist flags can be talked about in the same section, which ought to make it both more readable and more relevant. Scolaire (talk) 08:19, 14 May 2013 (UTC)

See [5] which says that about the St Andrew's Saltire or the bottom of this page 111 in [6] for a book. The standard for Wikipedia is if people have written about it in a reliable sources with some weight. Dmcq (talk) 08:44, 14 May 2013 (UTC)
A few other books Flag, nation and symbolism in Europe and America (mentions the Ulster Nation one), Clashing symbols?: a report on the use of flags, anthems and other national symbols in Northern Ireland, Unionists, Loyalists, and Conflict Transformation in Northern Ireland (has a picture of a bonfire with two starry ploughs and a tricolour on it), Material conflicts: parades and visual displays in Northern Ireland (talks about the various flags of the IRA including the sunburst and starry plough), plus a number of other books deal with this overall topic so there should eb enough for an reasonable article. I do however feel that the weight should be shifted a bit from actual flags to the issues and more references to books like thes put in to support that. Dmcq (talk) 11:31, 14 May 2013 (UTC)
All the sources you cite say that the various flags "can be seen", usually either in a mural or carried behind the tricolour. In the case of the Ulster Nation flag it only says it "has been proposed". In other words, those flags are not of themselves the issue, they are only incidental to the issue. To give them each a section and an illustration gives them an importance they don't have. I have removed them for the purpose of re-arranging the article according to my scheme above, and then added them back as a short few sentences in the appropriate place, without images (bearing in mind that all the images can still be found in the List of Flags). Since you know the appropriate pages of the books you cited above, maybe you wouldn't mind adding the citations.
As regards text, all I've done was to re-arrange. I've added nothing, re-worded nothing and removed nothing except duplication. The article still needs a lot of work, but at least, as it stands, it is clear what work needs to be done and where. Scolaire (talk) 09:48, 18 May 2013 (UTC)
That seems fair enough to me, I'm much happier the article deals with the actual issues more. I'll have a go at those citations in a day or two when I've got a bit of spare time. In fact I'd be happier if the actual flags weren't here but picture of people marching with them or over the top displays or murals with them. Dmcq (talk) 10:20, 18 May 2013 (UTC)

Flag of Ulster[edit]

The paragraph and image of the flag of Ulster has the appearance of being there to "even the scores" between unionists and nationalists, so that they get two flags each. The problem is that there is nothing in the article that remotely suggests that the flag of Ulster is contentious, or ever has been. The other three are dealt with in the Controversies section. I think the image should be removed, and the text shortened and added to the following paragraph e.g.

"Other flags flown by republicans include the Starry Plough and the Sunburst flag. The Flag of Ulster is seen by nationalists as the only legitimate flag of Ulster, and is the official flag of the Ulster Gaelic Athletic Association. Loyalists sometimes display the Flag of Scotland..."

Scolaire (talk) 08:36, 20 May 2013 (UTC)

True - unless someone can point to it being an "issue", I don't see why it needs to be there either. --HighKing (talk) 11:21, 20 May 2013 (UTC)
Done. Scolaire (talk) 11:55, 20 May 2013 (UTC)

I merely included it on reading the article as it is used primarly by nationalists in northern ireland however i was unaware it was required to be contentious in order to be included so no problem with its removal in that case Caomhan27 (talk) 15:28, 20 May 2013 (UTC)

St. Patrick's Day[edit]

The entire paragraph beginning "The flying of the Irish Tricolour by nationalists in Northern Ireland on St Patrick's Day has caused some controversy..." is unsourced and dubious. The flying of the Tricolour anywhere in NI at any time of year has always "caused some controversy"; there is no reason why Paddy's Day should be any different. "Arguing that St Patrick is the patron saint of the whole of Ireland, not just the Republic of Ireland" sounds like a typical WP scoring point, but I don't recall ever hearing a public figure making the point in regard to the flying of the Tricolour. Similarly, the meaning of the Tricolour (peace between green and orange) is not of any relevance to the national festival. Unless the paragraph is rewritten in a more meaningful way, with proper citations to reliable sources, I intend to delete it. Scolaire (talk) 12:21, 12 August 2014 (UTC)

It is quite easy to find sourcing for that. I don't see the relevance to this article though so I wouldn't mind it going on that basis. You must be aware that unionists feel alienated by people waving the Irish tricolour just like nationalists feel intimidated going down a street with Ulster Banners flying in it. The point is that St Patrick is for the whole of Ireland, not just nationalists. He isn't particular to the Republic. I think it is very good the way councils are trying to get people to use a neutral flag instead for the occasion. I must admit I think the objections to using a bit of Irish are just being a PITA though - Irish is a language of the whole of Ireland. Dmcq (talk) 14:51, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
Sorry I'd come back to see what was happening and thought I was at the flag of northern Ireland article. Yes flags on St Patrick's day is relevant to this article. Dmcq (talk) 15:17, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
Anyway [7] is a report from 2006 to the Belfast council which says about the problems with flags and their actions to try and make St Patrick's Day more inclusive. Here's Arlene Foster on it [8] And here [9] is about how efforts can go wrong. They probably think St Patrick spoke English when in Ireland. Dmcq (talk) 15:51, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
I don't know what's worse... vindicating your response when Scolaire's comment is nearly 2 years old, or that your responding to (sadly) recently retired editor ;-) In all seriousness, the fact many nationalists regard the tricolour as representing all Ireland explains their usage of the flag, made worse by the Yanks and other countries mistaking the flag to also to mean so. Mabuska (talk) 18:07, 11 June 2016 (UTC)
That's a long time. And I am very sorry about Scolaire too. Yep I should avoid getting sucked into these things and spend more time on things I'm more interested in. Otherwise am I really coming here for the aggro? That's a silly thing to do. Dmcq (talk) 21:36, 11 June 2016 (UTC)

Haass talks[edit]

The proposal put forward by Richard Haass was not for a new flag for Northern Ireland to replace the Ulster banner. Whoever put the image and the caption on the linked Irish Times article said that, but the article itself didn't, and neither did the draft proposal. The proposal was for "a new flag for Northern Ireland that would have cross-community support." Unionists said "that they would accept no replacement for the British union flag", and "a source" said the flag "was not designed to replace the union flag but to augment it." I'm taking out the italicised text. Scolaire (talk) 09:21, 24 March 2017 (UTC)