The man who supported the Isle of Barra flag campaign is entitled to wave his own flag this week, after a prestigious appointment with Scotland’s official heraldry body.
Philip Tibbetts is already communities vexillologist with the Flag Institute, a UK-wide charity which supports development of flags.
He campaigned alongside Barra community councillors, MSP Alasdair Allan and Barra and Vatersay Voluntary Action to get recognition for the Barra flag, a white cross on a green background.
Now he’s been invited by the Court of the Lord Lyon, Scotland’s heraldic authority, to join them as an honorary vexillologist, supporting communities who wish to develop their own flags. Vexillology is the study of the history, symbolism and use of flags.
On hearing of the appointment, isles MSP Alasdair Allan told welovebarrandvatersay.com: “I am delighted to hear that Phil has been appointed as the first honorary Vexillologist to the Court of the Lord Lyon. Phil went above and beyond in his efforts to help get Barra’s flag official recognition and his enthusiasm for community flags is clear for all to see.”
Mr Tibbetts said: "It is a huge honour to have been appointed as the Lyon Court's first honorary vexillologist. I am looking forward to continuing my work with communities across Scotland and working more with councils and clans."
The Barra flag was registered with the Court of the Lord Lyon in November last year, having been used for decades as a symbol of island pride and to hallmark goods made in Barra. The flag is described in the register as: “A Nordic cross of white on green…The green colour can be seen to represent the MacNeils and the island’s close connection to Ireland as well as the Viking heritage as shown by the Nordic cross.”