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Herefordshire (England)

English Traditional County

Last modified: 2020-10-03 by rob raeside
Keywords: herefordshire |
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[Herefordshire, England] image by Jason Saber, 6 November 2019

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Introduction: The Herefordshire Flag

The Herefordshire flag competition has completed and my own design won but it was amended by the organising committee, via the Flag Institute.
On the 4th of November 2019 the following article appeared: "Local artists miss out as Herefordshire's new flag revealed" by James Thomas, Hereford Times reporter. Here are some excerpts:

The new flag for Herefordshire has been unveiled, as it was raised to the top of the tower at Hereford Cathedral.

A competition to find the new flag saw designs from all over the UK entered, with the winning artist from Kent. Jason Saber's design is a bull, above the River Wye and the county's deep red soil. The winner was chosen by the people of Herefordshire from a short-list of the five, whittled down from an original 695 entries, a UK record for any flag competition. Mr Saber has no direct connection with Herefordshire, but the flag committee chairman said without him, there might not have been a flag. "It was Jason who got in touch to point out that almost every other county now had one," David Marshall said. The two unofficial flags that were around did not meet the criteria to be officially registered. So he proposed something that could be registered, and it was basically a version of what's been chosen."

Mr Saber said: "I don't have a deep knowledge of Herefordshire but I think I understand its symbols. "The thing about flag design is that less is more. You mustn't cram too much in. So I thought about what the main elements would be. The soil's a very deep rich red. And what can be better than a fertile soil as a background? It is called Here-FORD, that makes the river important. And the bull is the dominant symbol of the county so I decided that should be the main focus."

The flags will be on sell soon and be flown from public buildings on special occasions.
 Jason Saber, 6 November 2019

The red field represents Herefordshire's famous red earth. It also evokes the reddish-brown coat of the Hereford breed of cattle. In the top centre is the head of a Hereford bull with its typical wide white face, while the three wavy stripes in blue and white represent the River Wye flowing through the county. The flag was chosen in a public competition organised by the Herefordshire Flag Committee. It was hoisted for the first time in a ceremony at Hereford Cathedral in November 2019.

  • Flag Type: County Flag
  • Flag Date: 2nd November 2019

  • Flag Designer: Jason Saber
  • Adoption Route: Popular Vote
  • UK Design Code: UNKG7464
  • Aspect Ratio: 3:5
  • Pantone© Colours: Dark Red 201, White, Blue 300, Dark Red 484

Source: Flag Institute Registry
Valentin Poposki, 28 June 2020

Herefordshire Council flag

[Herefordshire Council Flag, England] image by Pete Loeser, 3 October 2020
base on this photo and variant elements, such as horns upturned or down, used by flag manufacturers.

Although un-official (not registered) this banner of the Herefordshire Council has been in use in the county for a number of years. The flag uses the distinctive elements found in the coat of arms shield awarded to Herefordshire Council back in 1946. The use of the more traditional bright red from the older shield designs rather than the brown-red used in the 2019 County flag is distinctive. The Herefordshire Council itself was formed in 1998 following the split of Hereford and Worcester into two separate counties. Formal meetings of the council are held at the Shirehall in Hereford. It is the local government authority for the county. (source)
Pete Loeser, 3 October 2020

Herefordshire Coat of Arms

[Herefordshire, England] image located and modified by Pete Loeser, 3 October 2020 (source)

"The arms were officially granted on February 28, 1946 to the Herefordshire County Council and adopted in 1998 by the new County of Herefordshire District Council. The red background is taken form the arms of the City of Hereford and also represents the red earth of Herefordshire. The silver lion is from the arms of the City of Hereford, and in base is a Herefordshire Bull's head. The silver and blue wave represents the River Wye. The crest is based on the arms of the Borough of Leominster, which feature a rampant lion holding a lamb and is a reference to the importance of agriculture to the county. The gold Lion is that of England, differenced by a garland of hops around his neck." (source)

Official Blazon

  • Arms: Gules on a Fesse wavy between in chief a Lion passant guardant Argent and in base a Herefordshire Bull's Head caboshed proper a Bar wavy Azure.
  • Crest: On a Wreath of the Colours a demi Lion rampant Gules holding in the sinister claw a Fleece Or.
  • Supporters: On the dexter side a Lion guardant Or gorged with a Wreath of Hops fructed proper and on the sinister a Talbot Argent gorged with a Collar Or charged with three Apples proper.
  • Motto : PULCHRA TERRA DEI DONUM - This fair land is the gift of God.
Source: Heraldry of the World.
Pete Loeser, 3 October 2020

Herefordshire County Flag
Commercial Variant

[Herefordshire, England] image by Pete Loeser, 3 October 2020
based on this photo located by Ian MacDonald, 14 July 2010 (source) - I used elements from different flags and chose the shape of the shield I liked the best.

This flag is being marketed for Herefordshire. Herefordshire like many counties did not actually have a flag as such, but it did have a coat of arms. The coat of arms was granted in 1946 and is therefore pretty recent [when the total history of England is considered]. There is a flag which is available for purchase which features the shield on the arms stretched into a banner. It is a particularly attractive flag for the people of Herefordshire.
Source: English County Flags
Ian MacDonald, 14 July 2010 (revised 2020)