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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Essex. UK
    Posts
    14

    Default Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    Hello all,

    I have searched this and other forums, and found endless opinions regarding the flying of a club burgee and courtesy flag at the same time. Many of these threads seem to contradict the RYA advice which says:

    "More than one flag may be flown on a halyard except that flag etiquette states that no flag can be above the burgee on the same halyard and no flag can be worn above the courtesy flag. If you fly a burgee at the starboard spreaders and are sailing in the territorial waters of another country this presents something of a dilemma, particularly if you must fly a burgee to match a special Ensign. Unless the burgee is in its traditional position at the masthead, you risk flouting one or another element of flag etiquette. How you choose to resolve this is a matter of choice."

    I would like to fly my Moody burgee when flying a courtesy flag. The RYA states it is a matter of choice but gives no advice. Would it be a suitable choice to fly the courtesy flag, and Q flag prior to customs, from the starboard spreader, whilst continually flying the Moody burgee from the port spreader?

    I can't use the masthead. I do not need to fly a club burgee to match a special Ensign.

    Giles

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Solent, UK
    Posts
    4,603

    Cool Re: Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    I fly the curtesy ensign on the Port spreader and my burgees on the Stbd. I'm not alone in this. My RNSA pennant is above my club burgee and then comes my scuttlebutt burgee. All three on the same spreader, of course. Don't want to upset the French unnecessarily (unlike Nige).

    A lot of boats have their burgees hauled up to the top of the mast on a stick, but I have signal halliards on the spreader. That may be the origin of the "no flag higher than the burgee" rule. I can't do it and can't be bothered to fit a burgee halyard up the side of my mast. No one's ever complained.
    Last edited by Topcat47; 10-04-19 at 15:42.
    Grow old disgracefully, it's more fun

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Posts
    621

    Default Re: Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    I suspect courtesy would be much better maintained if the burgees were to port and the courtesy flag to stbd where it must be, to be correct. There is no requirement to fly a burgee at all whereas there definately is to fly a courtesy flag and what's more it's specified on which side it has to go. If you can't fly the RNSA burgee to your satisfaction it is surely better and more courteous to revert to the red than misplace a national compliment?
    You've only got away with it (so far) through French tolerance. Don't try that stunt in Turkey, you'd come well unstuck.

    My workaround is to have two sets of signal halliyards on the stbd side so courtesty flag can go outboard and (RNSA) burgee inboard, at the same height. It seems to satisfy the conventional etiquette.
    Port side is mainly for battle ensign, le jolie rouge, gin penant etc, ie frivolity, not serious stuff.
    Last edited by Old Bumbulum; 10-04-19 at 16:09.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Home: Kent. Boat: Chichester
    Posts
    43,308

    Default Re: Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    Quote Originally Posted by Crazy-Diamond View Post
    Hello all,

    I have searched this and other forums, and found endless opinions regarding the flying of a club burgee and courtesy flag at the same time. Many of these threads seem to contradict the RYA advice which says:

    "More than one flag may be flown on a halyard except that flag etiquette states that no flag can be above the burgee on the same halyard and no flag can be worn above the courtesy flag. If you fly a burgee at the starboard spreaders and are sailing in the territorial waters of another country this presents something of a dilemma, particularly if you must fly a burgee to match a special Ensign. Unless the burgee is in its traditional position at the masthead, you risk flouting one or another element of flag etiquette. How you choose to resolve this is a matter of choice."

    I would like to fly my Moody burgee when flying a courtesy flag. The RYA states it is a matter of choice but gives no advice. Would it be a suitable choice to fly the courtesy flag, and Q flag prior to customs, from the starboard spreader, whilst continually flying the Moody burgee from the port spreader?

    I can't use the masthead. I do not need to fly a club burgee to match a special Ensign.

    Giles
    Chop the Moody burgee up and sew it back together as a rectangular house flag and fly it from the port spreader

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Greenwich
    Posts
    7,243

    Default Re: Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    For us the starboard is for country flag above regional flag and the port is for any number of house and club flags and burgees. Nobody seems to mind.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    East coast UK. Mostly. Sometimes the Philippines
    Posts
    8,787

    Default Re: Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    Quote Originally Posted by Old Bumbulum View Post
    I suspect courtesy would be much better maintained if the burgees were to port and the courtesy flag to stbd where it must be, to be correct. There is no requirement to fly a burgee at all whereas there definately is to fly a courtesy flag and what's more it's specified on which side it has to go. If you can't fly the RNSA burgee to your satisfaction it is surely better and more courteous to revert to the red than misplace a national compliment?
    You've only got away with it (so far) through French tolerance. Don't try that stunt in Turkey, you'd come well unstuck.

    My workaround is to have two sets of signal halyards on the stbd side so courtesy flag can go outboard and (RNSA) burgee inboard, at the same height. It seems to satisfy the conventional etiquette.
    Port side is mainly for battle ensign, le jolie rouge, gin pennant etc, ie frivolity, not serious stuff.
    I agree with everything Old Bumbulum has said here.

    Should anyone wish to fly their burgee at the masthead, clear of all the ironmongery, I will pass on this excellent recommendation from Pyrojames:

    http://www.theflagman.co.uk/product-...pic-flagpoles/

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Location
    Mooring, Faro
    Posts
    1,391

    Default Re: Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    My solution is to fly courtesy flag on stbd where it should be and not bother with either of my club burgees, simple.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Essex
    Posts
    22,015

    Default Re: Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    It's a long while since I had the facility to fly the burgee at the masthead, so I just follow conventional use and fly my burgee on the starboard halyard, moving it to the port side when that place is occupied by the courtesy flag. It gives the crew something to occupy them and keep them out of mischief.
    Far away is near at hand in images of elsewhere

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Bricks & mortar: Italy. Boat: Aegean
    Posts
    10,431

    Default Re: Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    Crazy-Diamond:
    You need ask_tel@#10.gov. She'd welcome such a dilemma.
    All epigrams are false

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Jersey/Antibes
    Posts
    22,432

    Default Re: Burgee on port spreader when flying a courtesy flag

    As another alternative, you can ask the relevant club for permission to put their burgee somewhere else, normally at the bow. Mirabella V did this with NYYC permission, because it was technically difficult to get the burgee to the mast head. Permissions are normally enduring - ie you ask once and you have it for life of that boat. See this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QUY4CaLjsPE

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