10 Events to Fly a Union Flag in 2021

2021 is set to be a year of big events and celebrations to make up for the lack of activity from last year. As we look forward to getting back to normality later this year, we’ve put together a top 10 list of events and days to fly your Union Flag in 2021. Mark your calendars and prepare to join in the festivities, support, and commemorations.

69th Anniversary of Accession Declaration of Queen Elizabeth II.

On 6th February 1952, Princess Elizabeth Windsor was informed of the death of her father, George VI. She then returned to the UK where she was proclaimed Queen Elizabeth II. The Queen’s succession to the throne took place in St James’ Palace and she was only 25 years old at the time.

To celebrate the anniversary of becoming our Queen, the Union Flag is flown at a variety of public and private buildings. Government offices and Royal residencies will display the Union flag to mark the achievement of another year of sovereignty for Queen Elizabeth II, and private organisations often mark the date with displays of patriotism and appreciation for the crown.

95th Birthday of Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth II is lucky enough to celebrate two birthdays. Her real birthday is the 21st April. This year the Queen will celebrate her 95th Birthday, breaking her own record of being the oldest monarch of the UK, which she has held since overtaking Queen Victoria who died at age 81 years and 243 days.

The Queen traditionally celebrates her real birthday privately, spending time with her family, but the occasion is marked publicly with gun salutes in Central London, Hyde Park, and Windsor Great Park. In 2020 these commemorations were cancelled due to Coronavirus, but in 2021 we hope to see them return, as well as the flying of Union flags at buildings and institutions across the UK.

Queen Elizabeth II, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge,  Balcony
Eurovision Song Contest Logo Rotterdam 2021

The Official Birthday of Queen Elizabeth II

The second Saturday of June is the official date to celebrate the birthday of the King or Queen of the United Kingdom. This year this falls on Saturday 12th June. Dating back to King George II in 1748, this tradition allowed for a promise of better weather when celebrating the birthday of the monarch and combining the occasion with a military parade.

More than 250 years later this tradition lives on with the Trooping of the Colour which involves more than 1400 soldiers, 200 horses and 400 musicians parading along the mall between Buckingham Palace and Whitehall, and a gathering of the Royal Family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. Well-wishers gather on the mall to wave Union flags, and organisations and buildings across London and the UK will put up bunting and flags as part of the celebration.

The Eurovision Song Contest

The Eurovision Song Contest began in 1956 with only 7 countries. Now the event is much bigger spectacle with more than 40 entrants each year. The beloved musical event is hosted by the country that won the previous year and this year, the final will be held on Saturday 22nd May 2021 in Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Many Brits were disappointed that the event couldn’t go ahead last year because of Coronavirus. With two years of excitement, audiences will be poised and ready to get behind whichever act the UK put forward, display the iconic red, white, and blue design of the Union Flag, and hope for our first win since 1997 with Katrina and Waves.

Windrush Day

Following World War II, the British Government launched a campaign encouraging immigration to the UK from other areas of the British Empire. On 22nd June 1948, the HMT Empire Windrush landed in London, bringing the first generation of Caribbean immigrants, and became the namesake for the generation of settlers during the period of influx throughout the 1940s and 1950s.

In 2018, the official commemoration day was added for Windrush Day, celebrating the contribution the Windrush generation and their descendants have made since they were welcomed to the UK. Events across the UK observe Windrush day on the anniversary of the ship arriving in London. Communities gather and enjoy festivities including music, food, exhibitions, dance performances, and debates.

 

UK Pride

Since 1972, British members of the LGBTQ+ community have celebrated Pride. Now with hundreds of events happening each year across the country, there is much support and ample opportunity to join in the celebration and commemoration of the fight for equality. In 2020, organisers for Northern Pride in Newcastle were awarded the title of UK Pride, being highlighted as a celebration for all British LGBTQ+ people. Due to the pandemic, this was pushed back to 23rd-25th July 2021.

Like many other Pride events across the year, UK Pride will feature performances, stalls, parades, and discussions of issues facing the LGBTQ+ community. As a festival celebrating the entire United Kingdom, you can expect to see the Union Flag, as well as a number of different pride flags for different groups within the LGBTQ+ community including Bisexual, Transgender, and the Progress Flag.

LGBT Pride Flag
Mo Farah Great Britain Olympics Union Flag Athlete

Tokyo Olympics

Many people know that the Olympics were founded in Ancient Greece around 800BC. Fewer people know that the Modern Olympic Games have been going since 1896. Every four years, the entire world comes together to appreciate the skill and talent of the best athletes in 33 sports in more than 300 events.

Like many other events from last year, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics have been postponed. Instead, they will take place from 23rd July 2021 until 8th August 2021. During this period, you can expect to see Britons joining together to cheer on athletes in a range of sports, hoping for the United Kingdom to climb the medal table. Union Flags will be seen in shops, high streets, houses, and cars, as well as at the official ceremony when the UK win any medals.

 

State Opening of Parliament

At the beginning of a new Parliamentary session, there is usually an official ceremony known as the State Opening of Parliament or the Queen’s Speech. As the key ceremonial event in the parliamentary calendar, it sets the government’s agenda for the upcoming session and begins with the Queen’s procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster. There is no set date for this, but it is expected to take place in October 2021.

Usually attracting large crowds and a notable television and online audience, the State Opening of Parliament is the only official event where all three constituent parts of Parliament come together – the Sovereign, the House of Lords, and the House of Commons. Union flags will be displayed across London, and around Buckingham Palace and Parliament buildings.

Remembrance Sunday

The end of the First World War was marked with the guns falling silent on the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918. This is commemorated each year with a moments silence to honour the sacrifice of those who’ve died in battle in World War One, and all conflicts since. Remembrance events take place both on 11th November, but also the closest Sunday to allow for public events. This year, Remembrance Sunday will take place on Sunday 14th November 2021.

Union flags will adorn buildings, flagpoles, and public spaces as part of Remembrance parades and ceremonies. Members of the public, governing bodies, and the armed forces all display the Union flag as a symbol of the country the fallen soldiers were fighting for.

 

Patron Saints of the United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is made up of 4 countries, each of which has its own national flag. The individual nations have flags to represent their Patron Saint and each has a day in the calendar where citizens of that country celebrate their Patron Saint.

Despite commemorating the individual nations, each country is part of the United Kingdom and a Union Flag will still be flown alongside the specific country flag at all government buildings.

  • St George’s Day – England – 23rd April
  • St David’s Day – 1st March
  • St Patrick’s Day – 17th March
  • St Andrew’s Day – 30th November
Remembrance Service, Cenotaph, Poppy, Wreath, Flag, Ceremony

What other events will you be flying a Union flag for this year? Feel free to let us know about your celebrations, festivities and more. Get in touch with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedin.

Place your order for a high quality, hand made Union Flag from Flagmakers. Choose from a range of sizes and multiple printing methods to find the flag and accessories that are perfect for your needs.

If you have further questions, give our sales team a call on 01246 472 949 or email sales@flagmakers.co.uk

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