The mysteries of flag etiquette explained

Do you ever feel second-bested because you don’t understand the rules about flags where they apply to boats and yachts? Do you perhaps feel that its just another way that the world has found of finding fault, and judging you to be wrong in yet another way? Do you think that it’s an area that exists purely for the entertainment of certain fastidious personality types that can safely be ignored? Is it just quaint and fun? Or is it important – so important that others who get it wrong MUST BE TOLD FIRMLY and should SEE DEMONSTRATIONS IMMEDIATELY?

I guess all four points of view may apply at times, though for me the first three come more naturally to an egalitarian, liberal kind of mind, and the last can be either fun or just tiresome, depending.

For the benefit of those who don’t really ‘get’ flags but like to fly the Red Ensign every now and again, here is an explanation of what you’re supposed to know so that you need never again feel at a loss. And it comes complete with a nice story or two…