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Wollondilly Shire (New South Wales, Australia)

Last modified: 2015-08-07 by ian macdonald
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The Woolondilly Shire is located in the Southern outskirts of Sydney. The shire (c. 38,500 inhabitants in May 2002) includes 16 towns and villages, the largest of them being Tahmoor (c. 4,664 inh.).

Source: Presentation on the Presentation on the shire official website
Ivan Sache, 21 August 2008

Flag competition

As reported in The Wollondilly Advertiser, 19 August 2008, the Wollondilly Shire needs a flag for next years' Australia Day celebrations. The competition is open to all residents, either as individuals or groups. The winner will receive 500 AUD and the winning flag will be unveiled on 26 January at Picton Botanic Gardens. The submission deadline is 17 October.
Ivan Sache, 21 August 2008

The winner was to be announced at the Australia Day celebrations on 26 January. Some time after this date, there was no sign of any announcement on the council website (which had announced the competition), and the reports of the celebrations at Picton made no reference to a new flag. I contacted the council in March, but received no reply.

At a Flags Australia meeting on 12 May, I asked whether anyone present knew anything about the competition, but I had not thought to check the website again. As it turns out, the council placed four finalist designs on their website (This page contains a link to a PDF with descriptions/explanations of the designs) in May, asking for feedback to assist the judges' final decision, to be received by 5 June.

All four designs feature a white Waratah. (White cultivars of the state's usually red floral emblem, Telopea speciosissima have been developed from naturally occurring plants in the Wollondilly area and local Aboriginal Dreaming includes the story of how the white waratah became red.) Other themes include aspects already found in the Council's logo - green hills and blue rivers. (In one case, the river is specifically Lake Burragorang, the main source of Sydney's water supply.)

When contacting the council, I noted that their previously existing Flying of the Australian National Flag Protocol (last approved November 2008) includes a reference to the “flag of the Corporation” as one of the flags that can be flown from the council offices in Picton. I asked whether this was included for the sake of the promised new flag, or whether the council had previously adopted a flag (presumably not for public use), but since I did not receive a reply, this remains unanswered.
Jonathan Dixon, 7 July 2009

I don't remember ever finding an announcement of the result, but local artist Sharon Shelton claims to be the designer of the winner, 'Waratah': The flag has a blue triangle at the hoist, edged white and bearing a white Waratah (Telopea speciosissima). The rest of the flag contains a landscape in shades of green and blue, with white outlines. The landscape shows the hills of the Burragorang Valley and Lake Burragorang, with the colours referring to the local bushland and the eucalyptus haze.

One of the attractions of the design was probably how well it matched the council logo of the time, featuring the same landscape. Since then, the logo has been replaced with a blue and green W in the form of a ribbon. I have no details of the flag being used since the announcement. The council's policy for flying the national and Aboriginal flags does not mention a shire flag.
Jonathan Dixon, 24 July 2015