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  1. #1
    Drascomber's Avatar
    Drascomber is offline Registered User
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    Default £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    I am told that the fine for flying an invalid flag as an ensign e.g. EU Flag, Saltire, Cornish flag etc is £500.

    If this is true, does any one know of any real case where a yachtie has actually been prosecuted?

  2. #2
    Beadle's Avatar
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    Default Re: £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    I don't know is the honest answer, but I suspect that it is true about being illegal, most things are nowadays.

    Perhaps best dealt with by addressing the peaked cap in broken English that you are Outer Mongolian and want political asylum. They will probably pay you the £500.

    Its really not something I would worry about.
    If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

  3. #3
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    Default Re: £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    Why would you want to replace the ensign? It bugs me that we seem to be the only nation ashamed of its own collective identity. Fly a local flag, but fly an ensign as well. This country has a fine tradition of tolerance, innovation and defence of the weak. We get it wrong, but by God when it counts, we often get it right as well. Our collective British identity counts for something, we are capable of being individual yet at the same time part of a wider diverse body of people. It's not jingoism to fly a national ensign, in a very small way it's putting yourself in a bigger picture than just the few square miles of Britain that you can bear to be proud of.
    Colvic Watson slideshow video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RayUzX7LZQ

  4. #4
    Kilter's Avatar
    Kilter is offline Registered User
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    Default Re: £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    I fly a red ensign and then hoist the local flag as a courtesy ensign. No-one has complained and many seem to enjoy the compliment.
    Light travels faster than sound this is why some people appear bright until you hear them

  5. #5
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    Default Re: £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    Thats exactly what we'd do too Kilter....

  6. #6
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    Default Re: £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    [ QUOTE ]
    I am told that the fine for flying an invalid flag as an ensign e.g. EU Flag, Saltire, Cornish flag etc is £500.

    If this is true, does any one know of any real case where a yachtie has actually been prosecuted?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    It's ages since there was thread on Ensigns to I looked up the Merchant Shipping Act 1995; here's an extract:-

    [ QUOTE ]
    4 Penalty for carrying improper colours (1) If any of the following colours, namely—
    (a) any distinctive national colours except—
    (i) the red ensign,
    (ii) the Union flag (commonly known as the Union Jack) with a white border, or
    (iii) any colours authorised or confirmed under section 2(3)(b); or
    (b) any colours usually worn by Her Majesty’s ships or resembling those of Her Majesty, or
    (c) the pendant usually carried by Her Majesty’s ships or any pendant resembling that pendant,
    are hoisted on board any British ship without warrant from Her Majesty or from the Secretary of State, the master of the ship, or the owner of the ship (if on board), and every other person hoisting them shall be guilty of an offence.
    (2) A person guilty of an offence under subsection (1) above shall be liable—
    (a) on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum;
    (b) on conviction on indictment, to a fine.
    (3) If any colours are hoisted on board a ship in contravention of subsection (1) above, any of the following, namely—
    (a) any commissioned naval or military officer,
    (b) any officer of customs and excise, and
    (c) any British consular officer,
    may board the ship and seize and take away the colours.
    (4) Any colours seized under subsection (3) above shall be forfeited to Her Majesty.
    (5) In this section “colours” includes any pendant.



    [/ QUOTE ]

    It seems to me that the flag has to be "national colours", and as Cornwall has yet to achieve that status (however richly deserved), the flag of St.P. hasn't reached that status.

    I also suspect that the flag has to be seized by an appropriate officer (above) probably as evidence (?) As the prosecution is to be in a Magistrates' court it is not likely to be something that you can Google.

    I haven't heard of any actual prosecution. If the "offence" is committed in coastal waters, I can't see anyone official being bothered to chase you, seize your flag, and take you to court.

    There's always the first time of course....

  7. #7
    saltwater_gypsy's Avatar
    saltwater_gypsy is offline Registered User
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    Default Re: £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    Simon...... your'e full of that stuff we don't mention on the Forum. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif[/img]
    "Cruising is boat maintenance in paradise"
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  8. #8
    timbartlett Guest

    Default Re: £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    You're way under!!
    I've just looked it up, and the fine for wearing some other country's ensign can be anything up to £50,000.
    The fine for wearing the wrong British ensign (such as a white or blue without a warrant) is "the statutory maximum" (which I think is £5000).

    But UK yachts under 50 registered tons are not *required* to wear an ensign while in in UK waters.

    The problem with the EU ensign is that it has the relevant national flag in the corner -- so the UKEU ensign looks like a defaced Blue Ensign, which could cop you a £5000 fine.

    AFAIK, Wales, Scotland, Cornwall, Ulster and the EU are not regarded as "Nations", so their flags are not "National colours", so wearing them is not illegal -- though you might get lynched by any passing BNP supporters (or given a very nasty look by UKIP)

    The problem with the England flag is that it looks like an RN Admiral's flag, so in theory I suppose you could get done for impersonating a naval officer, while the Scottish flag looks like code flag M, and could be seen as a request for medical assistance.

    Cornish and Welsh are probably OK.

    But why not save yourself the worry, and put them at the starboard spreader?

    It was fun looking it up, though!
    Bon voyages

  9. #9
    Fascadale's Avatar
    Fascadale is offline Registered User
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    Default Re: £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    This will play well in my part of the world where many of us are proud of our collective Scottish identity but not so happy with a UK identity.

    I always find it strange that so many who are so happy with the union that is the modern United Kingdom are so unhappy with the union that is the modern Europe.

    And yes I know we should be proud to sail under a flag beneath which many of our forefathers served and died, but I don't think that is entirely relevant to to-days world.

    If you are happy to fly the flag of the old Union, by all means do so, but let the rest of us move on.

  10. #10

    Default Re: £500 fine for flying Cornish etc ensign

    [ QUOTE ]
    But UK yachts under 50 registered tons are not *required* to wear an ensign while in in UK waters.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    So, logically, if we are not required to wear an ensign in home waters then we can fly anything we like (as we are not 'replacing' the ensign with anything else - as there is no requirement to wear an ensign!).

    We can fly St P, Saltire, Disneyland, a pair of Long Johns or nothing at all - whatever we choose.

    Logically. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img]

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