Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →

How to Fold a British Flag

For being one of the oldest flags in use, the British flag has a hard time finding its place in the symbolism of a great nation. At the time when the United Kingdom, Britain, and Northern Ireland became one, the design of a flag that represents all three identities with pride was needed to keep the peace. At the time of the union, the three peoples wanted to be sure that their identity was not lost on the symbol. Because of this, during the earliest years of the union, different designs continued to be represented as the Union Flag. Throughout its history, the design and use of the Union Flag, “Union Jack” to others, has never been given directions for use. In fact, the use of the flag is still monitored under law so as not to be flown by citizen ships out to sea outside of the Union Navy. The Union Flag is without much regulation outside of the Naval presentation by ships of the United Kingdom and its partners. To this day, it continues to go without regulations as to the use and display of the national symbol.

Present the Union Flag, making sure that it does not touch the ground upon raising or removing from the pole. Take each corner of the Union Flag horizontally and bring together as a half fold. Collect each top corner together to fold half again.

Present the Union Flag vertically and roll the flag evenly to result in a circumference of 1 inch to 4 inches and at a length that fits the tube container recommended by the Royal Navy as a container most appropriate for the Union Flag.

Seal the container tub and store in a cool dark place so that the flag is away from light or heat that may alter the flag's colors or fiber.


There are no laws pertaining to the folding or unfurling of the Union Flag of Britain. Raise and lower the Union Flag on an appropriate flagpole, as described by the local government permits. Handle a Union Flag of Britain with care, as the care of national symbols should be a requirement of handling a flag of any nation.


Do not touch the ground with the Union Flag. Do not fly a Union Flag upon a sailing vessel out to sea. This regulation goes back to the days when the United Kingdom first came together, and from which the Royal Navy had the only ships flying the Union Flag as a national symbol of strength.

Garden Guides