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Royal London Yacht Club (United Kingdom)

Last modified: 2019-11-11 by rob raeside
Keywords: royal london yacht club | blue ensign |
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[Royal Londn Yacht Club ensign] image by Clay Moss, 24 September 2007

See also:

Flag of Royal London Yacht Club

I have seen the badge placement illustrated in the center of the fly on RLYC's ensign and have seen it illustrated more toward the lower fly quarter.

The history of the club is provided on the club website at

The Royal London Yacht Club was founded in London in 1838. Its first meeting place was the Coal Hole Tavern in Fountain Court on the Strand. Racing commenced on the [River] Thames. It obtained its Royal Warrant from the dowager Queen Adelaide in 1849. Now the Royal London Yacht Club has its House located in the centre of Cowes [Isle of Wight] waterfront, on a site that it has occupied since 1882. The club has a long history in British yachting. Its members have ranked among the most colourful personalities in the yachting scene. It was the first popular yacht club to bring the sport to Cowes . In its early days it fostered racing innovations and was instrumental in establishing a universal set of rules and system of measurement. Concern with the past is now balanced by an active and progressive membership with interests in all forms of yachting and a very active social calendar. Membership is limited to 500 members.
Clay Moss, 24 September 2007

Variant with lower badge

[Royal Londn Yacht Club ensign] image by Clay Moss, 24 September 2007


[Royal London Yacht Club burgee] image by Clay Moss, 24 September 2007

Former Flags of the Royal London Yacht Club's Predecessors

Arundel Yacht Club

[Arundel Yacht Club burgee] image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 10 October 2019

The London based club was established by a group of gentlemen, who sailed on the River Thames. They kept their yachts on the foreshore by the Arundel Steps, which lead to the formation of the ‘Arundel Yacht Club’ in 1838.

London Yacht Club 1845-1846

[London Yacht Club 1845-1846] image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 10 October 2019

In 1845, the members renamed the club as 'London Yacht Club'. At the same time, not being entitled to the ensign of HM Fleet, the Club adopted a White Ensign with blue cross, with the Union flag in the upper canton and a gold star in the canton below.

London Yacht Club 1846-1849

[London Yacht Club 1845-1846] image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 10 October 2019

In 1846, the Lord Mayor gave permission to use the City Coat of Arms, which replaced the star.

In 1849, HM Adelaide, the Queen Dowager, widow of King William IV, became the Patron of the London Yacht Club and thus the club was renamed again as 'Royal London Yacht Club'. At that time, RLYC was the seventeenth in seniority of yacht clubs. A warrant soon followed, dated 17 October 1849, to wear a Blue Ensign of HM Fleet with the City Arms in the fly topped by a royal crown. A Burgee was adopted which unlike many clubs, actually corresponded with the Ensign.

The Club flourished on the Thames where its activities gained widespread support. However, in 1882, it was decided to move to Cowes on the Isle of Wight. A lease was taken on the two elegant Regency Houses on the Parade, which is still the Clubhouse today.


Klaus-Michael Schneider, 10 October 2019