The Guernsey Flag
The people of Guernsey proudly fly the Island's own flag. A red cross of St George, which reflects the island's constitutional relationship with the English Crown, and a gold cross shown on the banner of William the Conqueror which represents the historic connection with the Duchy of Normandy.
This flag was first flown on the 9th May 1985 - the 40th Anniversary of the Island's liberation from the Second World War Occupation. Before this just a simple Cross of St George was used but often caused confused at events such as the Commonwealth games where the English flag was also to be seen.
Alderney and Sark flags
The Cross of St George also forms the basis for these island flags.
Alderney has the island's Coat of Arms in the centre. The badge is a green disc bearing a crowned lion rampant holding a sprig of leaves.
The Sark flag has a red canton containing two yellow lions and was adopted in 1938
The Guernsey Ensign
The Guernsey Ensign is for use by Guernsey residents who are British subjects. They may fly the Ensign on vessels which are registered or certificated in their own names regardless of where they sail.
The Guernsey Arms
The Arms of the Bailiwick are a shield with three lions passant guardant on a red shield surmounted by a sprig. A shield with these three lions is in wide use as an emblem in England. Its use in Guernsey stems from the time that Edward I in 1279 sent a single seal, including the shield with the three lions of the King for use in the Channel Islands.
It is believed that he granted a seal for use in the Channel Islands because of the hazards and the time delay of having documents sealed in England.
By about 1302 it is apparent that the Bailiwicks of Guernsey and Jersey had each been granted their own seals, no doubt because of the difficulties which had arisen from having a single seal moving between the two Islands and perhaps because of the wish of each island to assert its distinctive constitutional personality. Indeed there is evidence to suggest that Guernsey may have had its own Seal in 1290.
The Shield without the words which appear on the Bailiwick Seal has been widely used as the Arms of the Bailiwick, its use having been sanctioned by Edward VII in 1906.
The Shield is distinguished from the English Arms and the Jersey Arms. It is incorrect to refer to the sheld as the Guernsey Crest. A crest in heraldry is something quite different. The sprig has varied in its form over the centuries but is placed slightly left of centre on the top of the shield.