Information

Flag flying on government buildings: 2023

Guidance for flag flying on Scottish Government buildings on significant dates.


Flag flying dates

These guidelines apply to the Scottish Government, its related agencies and associated departments.

2023 date

Event

Flag

9 January

Birthday of The Duchess of Rothesay

A

20 January

Birthday of The Countess Of Forfar

A

1 February

Start of LGBT History Month (see note 1)

F

10 March

Birthday of The Earl of Forfar

A

13 March

Commonwealth Day (see notes 1 and 2)

H

28 April

International Workers Memorial Day

I

6 May The King's Coronation Day A

9 May

Europe Day (see note 1)

G

17 May

International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (see note 1)

F

17 June

Official Celebration of The King’s Birthday

A

18 June

Autistic Pride Day (see note 1)

J

21 June Birthday of The Duke of Rothesay A

24 June

Edinburgh Pride (see notes 1 and 2) and Armed Forces Day

F

15 July

Glasgow Pride (see notes 1 and 2)

F

17 July

Birthday of The Queen Consort 

A

15 August

Birthday of The Princess Royal 

A

3 September

Merchant Navy Day (see note 1)

D

8 September

Anniversary of Accession

A

12 November

Remembrance Day (see note 3)         

C

14 November

Birthday of His Majesty The King

A

20 November

Transgender Remembrance Day

K

30 November

St. Andrew’s Day

B

1 December

World AIDS Day (see note 1)

L

Key: flags to be flown in the formation detailed below

SAH = St Andrew's House

A - by Royal assent, for Royal birthdays and anniversaries the Royal Banner (superior) and the Saltire may be flown at SAH - as the principal Scottish Government building - or at another Scottish Government building when the First Minister is present (see note 8 in the guidance section).

flag example

B - Saltire, or two Saltires if building has two or more flagpoles..

By Royal assent, for St. Andrew's Day, the Royal Banner (superior) and the Saltire may be flown at SAH - as the principal Scottish Government building - or at another Scottish Government building when the First Minister is present (see note 8 in the guidance section).

flag example

C - Remembrance Day

Union Flag and Saltire or Saltires if the building has more than two flagpoles.

flag example

D - Red Ensign if building has one flagpole.

Red Ensign and Saltire if building has two or more flagpoles.

flag example

E - Armed Forces Day flag if building has one flagpole.

Armed Forces Day flag and Saltire if building has two or more flagpoles.

flag example

F - Rainbow flag if building has one flagpole.

Rainbow flag and Saltire if building has two or more flagpoles.

flag example

G - European flag if building has one flagpole.

European flag and Saltire if building has two or more flagpoles.

flag example

H - Commonwealth flag if building has one flagpole.

Commonwealth flag and Saltire if building has two or more flagpoles.

flag example

I - On this day, the Saltire(s) should be hoisted right up and then lowered to half-mast for the day. (see note 9** in the guidance section)

flag example

J - Autistic Pride flag and Saltire should be flown from SAH only.

flag example

K - Transgender flag should be flown if building has one flagpole.

Transgender flag and Saltire if building has two or more flag poles.

flag example

L - World AIDS Day flag and Saltire should be flown from SAH only.

flag example

Notes

1. Scottish Government (SG) main buildings which have four flag poles:

  • should fly the Saltire and European flag
  • plus flags indicated in the schedule
  • St Andrews House will fly the Ukrainian Flag when possible

On buildings that only have one flagpole, one of the following flags should be flown:

  • Rainbow
  • Commonwealth
  • European
  • Autistic Pride
  • Armed Forces Day
  • Red Ensign
  • Transgender
  • World AIDS Day

Where a building has two or more flagpoles, the Saltire should also be flown.

2. Dates advised annually for 2023:

  • Commonwealth Day is 13 March
  • Official Celebration of His Majesty’s Birthday is 17 June
  • Edinburgh Pride is 24 June
  • Armed Forces Day is 24 June
  • Glasgow Pride is 15 July

3. Usually the second Sunday of the month.  The date for Remembrance Sunday is 12 November.

Additionally:

  • some dates are listed as to be confirmed until confirmed
  • the guidance will be updated accordingly
  • the First Minister has instructed that the European flag is flown from SG buildings. This will be on a daily basis except for specific flag flying dates
  • the Ukrainian flag is being flown from St Andrews House when possible for the duration of the conflict in that country

Contact

Email: protocolandhonours@gov.scot
Tel. 0131 244 3403

Protocol and Honours Team
2W, St. Andrew’s House
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG

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