Flag choice at border crossing under review

Saltires flying at the Lamberton border crossing
Saltires flying at the Lamberton border crossing

Flags flown at the Lamberton entrance to Scotland could soon include the saltire, union flag and one depicting the Berwickshire coat of arms.

The three flags currently flying are all saltires but this is not set in stone and further investigations will be made with the Lord Lyon as to whether the coat of arms, with a bear chained to a tree, could be used on a flag. A community vexillologist would also need to advise whether it could be included in the UK Flag Registry.

The issue of the border flags was raised at December’s Berwickshire Area Forum and chairman Michael Cook was asked to explore what flexibility there would be in what flags could be flown.

“Transport Scotland do not have a policy as such on the flying of flags adjacent to the trunk road network,” Gemma Montrose TRBO directorate area manager, responded.

“Any formal proposal form alteration would require the views of external stakeholders such as VisitScotland and Scottish Borders Council to be sought through consultation and taken into consideration. This would be done following a detailed formal request proposing alteration of the flag arrangement.

“Any non standard flags proposed would need to gain prior approval from Transport Scotland.”

Berwickshire Area Forum was keen to replace the three saltires on the Scottish side of Lamberton Toll to match the three flags on the English side which include the union flag the St George’s Cross and the Northumberland flag.

“The Berwickshire Area Forum is keen to highlight the regional distinctiveness of our area, and to seek to mirror the position on the Northumberland side of the Borders, where opportunity is given to emphasise the local as well as national dimensions of the area’s identity,” explained Councillor Cook.

Scottish Borders Council was responsible for the two flag poles at the northern lay-by at Lamberton and in 2004 and flew the saltire and the union flag. In 2006 Transport Scotland took over responsibility for the lay-by and put up an extra pole and started flying three saltires.

On the English side Northumberland County Council continues to be responsible for the flags at the southern lay-by at Lamberton and they were keen to “boost collective tourism efforts”.