The Scottish island of Barra, in the Outer Hebrides archipelago, traditionally part of Inverness-shire, has been associated with a green flag bearing a white Nordic style cross for over a decade. Details regarding the provenance and significance of this design are sketchy but the island was part of the mediaeval Norse ‘Kingdom of the Isles’ and the name of the isle itself is of part Norse origin; as with the prospective flag of South Uist, this historico-cultural linkage is reflected in the Scandinavian form of the flag. Presently the design is not registered with Scotland’s highest heraldic authority, the Lord Lyon, as dictated by Scottish law but in late 2016 a concerted effort began to see this design officially registered, with a meeting to discuss a formal petition for registration to the Lord Lyon.
Philip Tibbetts of the Flag Institute is seen here
, fourth from the right, with members of the island community and the Barra flag. Local MSP Alasdair Allan, who initiated the drive for its official recognition is seen at left.
The above cross is realised with thick dimensions which gives the flag some substance but there is evidently no fixed form of the design as yet, with thinner crosses also appearing.
The flag flies across the island
, can be seen on local vehicles
and is found in shops to indicate the authenticity of locally produced goods.
In addition to this distinct island flag, a flag to represent the entire Outer Hebrides archipelago also exists.