Wednesday, June 16 is Sussex Day. Across the county and despite all the current restrictions, this important event is being celebrated in so many different ways, and from rooftops in many of our towns and villages the official Sussex flag can be seen.
In celebration of this auspicious occasion our very own masked Rye town crier, Paul Goring (pictured), proclaimed the Sussex Charter at 12 noon on Wednesday outside the Buttermarket, where the mayor (with the lovely Sophie) was also in attendance. Ironically, due to Covid-19 restrictions, the event wasn’t advertised to avoid attracting a crowd!
The flag of Sussex has an interesting history which I felt worth sharing, the attached extract is courtesy of Wikipedia:
The flag of Sussex was registered as a result of a campaign started in August 2010 by Sussex resident Brady Ellis, under the name of Saint Richard’s Flag, after the county’s patron saint, Saint Richard of Chichester. The flag was slightly altered from the original proposal before its registration and certification by chief vexillologist, Graham Bartram of the Flag Institute.
The flag represents the whole of Sussex and is based on the traditional emblem of Sussex, six gold martlets on a blue field representing the six rapes of Sussex. The first known recording of this emblem being used to represent the county was in 1611 when cartographer John Speed deployed it to represent, the Kingdom of the South Saxons. However, it seems that Speed was repeating an earlier association between the emblem and the county, rather than being the inventor of the association.
It is now firmly regarded that the county emblem originated and derived from the coat of arms of the 14th century Knight of the Shire, Sir John de Radynden. Today it is used by many Sussex organisations, such as Sussex County Cricket Club, Sussex County Football Association and also features on the village sign of Ringmer in Sussex. The Flag Institute manages and maintains the national flag registry of the United Kingdom, and therefore this is now the definitive County Flag of Sussex which was first flown officially on Saturday 28 May 2011 at Lewes Castle and was flown from the Department of Communities and Local Government at Eland House, London on Sussex Day, 16 June 2011.
Some additional photographs from Paul Whiteman:
Image Credits: Nick Forman , Facebook , Paul Whiteman .