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Gibraltar (United Kingdom): Variants of the flag

Last modified: 2015-08-13 by ivan sache
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Flag with plain castle

I was on a recent visit to Gibraltar in August 2003, the week before the national holiday. Upon entering the colony, there was a set of three poles flying an European Union, United Kingdom and Gibraltar flag on each just across the border from Spain. The Gibraltar flag had no details on the castle. There were no gates or openings in the wall. It was just a solid-red, castle-shaped blob.
As far as other differences, the top part of the key was more squared than the diamond-shape indicated in the official drawing. The tie or rope from the key to the castle was a simple gold line, not the detailed, woven strand indicated.
Moreover, the flags that were for sale were not 3'x6', but 3'x5' versions made in Taiwan from cheap polyester; they did not comply with the official diagram either.

Paige Herring, 17 November 2003

Flag with filled-in background of the castle


Flag variant - Image by Martin Grieve & Eugene Ipavec, 28 July 2010

The official site of the Government of Gibraltar once showed a photo of the an official occasion, a document-signing ceremony for some kind of agreement with the US. The Gibraltar flag in the background has several minor differences from the official model - the three windows on the central tower are larger and of equal size, the lower story of the central tower is bordered with two lines, not one, and the platform it is on extends farther back. But there is one major mistake, and an oddly amateurish one: the empty space between the central and flanking towers is filled in with red.

Eugene Ipavec, 28 July 2010

Flag with thinner castle and red stripe


Flag variant - Image by Juan Manuel Gabino, 15 June 2002

Flag with thick-walled, masoned castle


Flag variant - Image by Željko Heimer, 15 June 2002

The flag with black masoning on the castle was once the one in actual use, including at the official website of the Government of Gibraltar. The World Flag Database (website) used to show a flag similar to the one above, until ca. December 2003.

Joseph McMillan, Ned Smith & Santiago Dotor, 2 March 2005

Flag with angled, masoned castle


Flag variant - Image by António Martins, 3 January 2000, after a flag bought in Gibraltar by Dov Gutterman (photo)

There were a lot of flags printed with angled castles, however the recent ones have been corrected to the official style of castle.

Jim Watt, 23 March 2003

Sketchy flag


Flag variant - Image by Jorge Candeias, 9 March 2000, after a photo (close-up) taken in Gibraltar

I have a photo taken in Gibraltar with a lot of flags. These flags are white over red in a proportion of 1:2, like the flag of the colony, but, unlike this one, the castle is black and there is no key. The photo shows one street filled with these ropes stretched from one side to the other, where several such flags were hanging, alternating with other ropes with small triangular pennants, plain red or blue, or with Union Jack in them, as seen in the detail of the blue rectangle.
In my opinion, the best explanation to these flags is that it is cheaper to produce flags with a black outline of the castle than those official flags with the red castle filled with black lines. In that case, I would regard them as unofficial variations of the Gibraltar flag.

Jorge Candeias, 19 August 1999