An Ensign for Katie L……. …

As a former racing man I have always regarded any flag on the back of a boat as unnecessary windage and a waste of a good laminar air flow.

However, a flagstaff would make a great place to put a camera attached to a gorillapod of some sort

It also occurred to me that the right flag against the right background might give me a few more shots.

So.... I have come to the conclusion that Katie L should have a flag of some sort. Maybe she should have a few which has got me looking around for candidates

I live in Buckinghamshire

but our county flag has an element of the Fascist about it in some way



I did my first sailing in Essex and spent much of my youth there

Far topo warlike and Sinbad for my liking



then there is Suffolk where I went to School




I am a Londoner by birth

but people would assume I am a football fan



then of course there is the only flag that I should fly - which is the Red Ensign

it can look like a tatty duster - aesthetically it does not cut the mustard - especially when the wind is blowing in the wrong direction



I quite like the Royal Standard

but that would really upset a few people



the one I really like the look of is this one - it tells the story of my mongrel race

I am jealous of the Yanks, canadians and most of our European neighbours who can just go ahead and fly their national Flag.


I am open to suggestions chaps


and -  how big should it be





This is about Dylan Winter's Blog, Hunter Minstrel.

28 Responses to “An Ensign for Katie L……. …”

  1. 31 July, 2012 at 8:20 pmCorribee says:

    The dusters fine!

  2. 31 July, 2012 at 8:23 pmCorribee says:

    Being really silly, you could take the signal flags for KTL and design your own flag (good talking point when having a yarn over a drink or two on a mooring).

  3. 31 July, 2012 at 8:40 pmPaul Mullings says:

    How about a chart of the British Isles showing your route completed and continue to sew your track on as you go? Oh and by the way for a boat your size the ensign should be about 16″ x 24″ in the old money.

  4. 31 July, 2012 at 9:01 pmPeter Getzen says:

    Why not fly the red ensign? Perhaps you could get permission from the Minister of Marine to use a defaced red ensign with your KTL logo – like the sailboat with the white and red sails. Now that would get people’s attention. I like the options. If I was there I would try to use the blue ensign. That seems to be less standard, but the website I was reading seems to indicate it can’t be used on H.M. ships.

  5. 31 July, 2012 at 10:31 pmJulian Fisk says:

    How about a pair of Y-fronts? haha

  6. 31 July, 2012 at 11:03 pmDylan Winter says:

    Blue Ensign – you have to qualify by being ex RN or being a member of the right yacht club


  7. 31 July, 2012 at 11:04 pmDylan Winter says:

    I looked up the flag letters for KTL – it would be hard to make them look nice

  8. 31 July, 2012 at 11:18 pmTim Haney says:

    Red Ensign. You Brits have very much to be proud of

  9. 1 August, 2012 at 5:57 amGary Judge says:

    Go with the Red Ensign, nothing wrong with that and the ensign has been used by sailors from around 1700. One of my ensigns is made of very light nylon material and it serves very well as a wind device for the low wind days.

  10. 1 August, 2012 at 8:48 amPaul Mullings says:

    A wind device, wow must get one of those ;-)

  11. 1 August, 2012 at 2:17 pmSteven Lewis says:

    I was going to recommend the Island and your route…but I am a few posts too late…so I’ll Second it. Or you could do a family search and dig up a crest to your liking.

  12. 1 August, 2012 at 4:39 pmIan Owers says:

    Safest to use the Red ensign – it avoids the fine (£2,000 I think) which (with your luck) you would probably get from a passing admiral …!

  13. 1 August, 2012 at 4:48 pmBarrry Getzen says:

    You can be fined for using the wrong flag? Its quite a bit more relax here in the states. Most private vessels don’t fly anything and those that do are sometimes pretty strange. I have noticed though that skippers of sail boats are more inclined to follow flag ettiquette than skippers of power boats.

  14. 1 August, 2012 at 9:34 pmJulian Fisk says:

    I think you should design your own KTL flag. then you can make it as you like it then. or ask for ideas?

  15. 2 August, 2012 at 12:18 amTomH says:

    While most of us Yanks do (improperly) fly the National flag – by yacht etiquette it should only be the US Yacht Ensign – which looks a lot like the National flag with the original 13 stars in a circle.

    Fly the red ensign!

    TomH – Salem, Mass, USA

  16. 2 August, 2012 at 11:36 am[email protected] says:

    Its a pity we cant all fly the same flag, maybe a black one with a little blue dot in the middle, but in the mean time I think the red duster about half the size of the one in your photo…..Geoff

  17. 3 August, 2012 at 5:01 amjim says:

    Welsh flag. Best flag in the world….It’s got a dragon on it.

  18. 4 August, 2012 at 1:29 amJohn says:

    After sailing under the Red Duster for nearly 20 years in the Merchant Navy, I was never more proud to see that flag flying in a foreign port. Fly the Red Ensign! By the way Dylan, if you can find an old one made out of traditional bunting, it will fly much better than crappy nylon ones made in China!


  19. 6 August, 2012 at 10:47 amDylan Winter says:

    brilliant justification

    hard to argue with that


  20. 6 August, 2012 at 10:52 amthor says:

    Most of the boys seem to favour the red duster, so do I as an ex RAN sailor. Brittania rule the waves after all.

  21. 7 August, 2012 at 10:58 pmKen Dalton says:

    Its all cut and dried, ie:
    The blue ensign is by Royal appointment
    The white ensign is The Royal Navy
    So its the red ensign, no question

  22. 9 August, 2012 at 11:55 pmChris says:

    I agree with Tim Haney’s comment above. I am a “Yank” but I would gladly fly the Red Duster if I were you. It is a beautiful flag.

  23. 14 August, 2013 at 5:20 amJoseph says:

    I like the idea of a personal crest. I like the swan flag. My crest is a swan with key in beak. Would look good on blue field. But being that I have a red Falcon on the mainsail, that might be too many birds.
    I have been flying the flag of maritime Scotland before the Union. Red feild with the Saltair in the hoist corner. Supprise! the Miami flag maker knew the flag. You should have seen it in the pics I sent you of ‘Carrifran Falcon’ in the Apalachacola Classic Boat Show. If you are going to fly the red ensign, then you still should have your own ‘house flag’ ( that’s am American yacht term).

  24. 14 August, 2013 at 7:32 amdylan winter says:

    flags can be very divisive in the UK

    I would like tofly a Union Flag (jack) but that would upset a lot of people

    we have red ensigns for plebs, blue ones for toffs, white ones for the RN.

    then the scots fly the saltire – occasionally

    Cornish and Devon men fly their own flags

    of course as an ex racing man I resent the windage

    and it would be forever getting in the way of the camera


  25. 3 March, 2014 at 11:42 pmjoecomet says:

    I wonder what kind of trouble I am going to get into flying my pre Union Scottish Maritime Ensign? Red with Saltair at the hoist.
    So far nobody in “cracker Florida” objects.

  26. 2 September, 2014 at 9:45 pmDave Barker says:

    Personally, I’d hang on for while. If the Scottish people vote for independence we may be required to have new Union Flags and Red Ensigns without the Saltire. Any cruising types with a sewing machine on board?

  27. 2 September, 2014 at 9:51 pmdylan winter says:

    In an ideal world I would bung Katie L on the trailer and bring her home to the garden and leave her there until I had finished with the outer hebrides and western ireland. However, I need to release the money from Harmony…. so if anyone wants to buy her contact me. It will break my heart …. but then I regretted losing every boat I have ever owned. They take a slice of your life with them when they go. This year in harmony has been a cracker. I enjoyed getting her ready, meeting superdave, I loved Chich harbour and the solent, the journey to scotland was a wonderful adventure and the bit around the top of scotland has been wonderful. I have another six weeks with her before she goes ashore for the winter. I can always buy another Centaur when the cash flows again.

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