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Guyana - Historical Flags - Part 2

Last modified: 2021-03-13 by rob raeside
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1955 - 1966 Flags

image by António Martins and Jaume Ollé, 29 January 2000
1965 blue ensign

image by António Martins and Jaume Ollé, 29 January 2000
British Guyana 1965 red ensign (probable)

image by Jaume Ollé, 6 February 2000
British Guyana governors

image by Jaume Ollé, 30 June 1997
The badge of Guyana

The badge of Guyana. Was used within a white circle in the blue (and probably also on a red ensign), prior to 1964.
Source: Flag of All Nations 1955 [hms55]
Jaume Ollé, 30 June 1997

I would say the blue ensign should not have the white circle background.
Santiago Dotor, 1 February 2000

The image of the Blue Ensign of British Guiana had the badge on white disc. According to Barraclough (1965) [bar65], "The badge of British Guiana appears on the Blue Ensign without any background ... " 
Bruce Berry, 4 February 2000

This Flag of All Nations 1955 [hms55] is the Admiralty flag book -- in case of doubt, I'd follow it instead of Barraclough [bar65].
António Martins, 4 February 2000

You would think that a white disc was unnecessary but Change 2 (March 1965) to the 1955 AFB, which listed all the colonial badges and whether or not they were on a white disc, indicates that it should be on a white disc. This badge was in use 1955 to 1966: Based on the arms; Royal Warrant 6 December 1954.None of the badges was an official defacement of the Red Ensign
David Prothero, 4 February 2000

Governor General (1966-1970)

image by Željko Heimer, 21 March 2003

Flag seen in Guyana before Independence

image by António Martins, 24 July 2004

Flag of Guyana before independence. I don't know the ratio and have drawn it as 1:2. Abolished in 1966.
Jaume Olle, 24 January 1996

Please be advised that the flag depicted as the British Guiana flag (i.e. before independence) is incorrect. Prior to its independence, Guyana was a British colony, therefore, officially the British Guiana flag was the Union Jack. The flag colours depicted on site as being British Guiana's bears some resemblance to one of the pennants used by one of the political parties.
Harry Lime, 12 October 1997

The flag shown, 5 horizontal stripes, black over green over yellow over white over red is certainly not the flag of British Guiana, as it was called until independence in 1966. It could well be that of one of the two main political parties, either Jagan's People's Progressive Party, or Burnham's People's National Congress. Although B.G. had full internal self-government between 1961 and 1966 the official flag would still have been British. It's probable that technically, and as a matter of practice, the national land flag was the Union Jack. The Blue Ensign defaced with the badge of the colony was officially still a purely maritime flag. However since it wouldn't be particularly informative to show Union Jacks for all British colonies prior to independence I think that the appropriate flag would be the Blue Ensign with the badge of B.G.. Between 1954 and 1966 this was a starboard bow view of a three-masted sailing ship, on a shield, with a scroll below, directly onto the fly.
D. Prothero, 12 October 1997

I am a Guyanese born and bred, but until I saw your depiction of the former Guyanese was not aware and have never seen it. I left Guyana in late '72 and as far as I'm aware the flag before Independence was the Union Jack. If I'm wrong and you are aware of facts that I'm not, I'm not averse to being corrected, but until then I think you should recheck your data. Regards
Des Wight, 5 May 1998

The same question was asked on 12th October last year. I answered then that the flag, five horizontal stripes black, green, yellow, white, red, was probably the flag of one of the two main political parties of the time, either Jagan's People's Progressive Party or Burnham's People's National Congress.
David Prothero, 6 May 1998

I answered to Mr. Wight the following
Dear Sir,
Many thanks for your news about Guyana, but you are wrong. The former Guyana flag with five horizontal stripes of Black, green, yellow, white and red was designed under the Jagan government around 1964, but never adopted officially. Several encyclopaedias and books show this flag previously at independence, but later another design was selected because the leftist government of Jagan was supplanted by another government.
The proposal for the independence flag was made by W. Smith and was red, with two triangles with base in the hoist: the first one (the small) green, and the second yellow. But the proposal was retouched because the five colors are considered the national ones and then fimbriations were added to the Smith proposal
The five-striped flag wasn't abolished and exists currently under the name of "folklorical flag"
Jaume Olle, 6 May 1998

The official flag before independence was the Union Jack (the British flag). The five horizontal-striped "flag" was not really a flag. It was (is) the design of a decorative length of cloth used for draping public buildings during national celebrations. It came into use after independence. It definitely is not the design of any political party flag.
Amb. Odeen Ishmael, Guyana Embassy - Washington DC, 18 December 2000