The White Ensign consists of a red St George's Cross on a white field with the Union Flag in the upper canton. The St George's Cross (or the Cross of St George is a centred red cross on a white background The Union Flag, also known as the Union Jack, is the national flag of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The ensign is flown on Royal Navy ships and at land bases operated by the navy. An ensign is a distinguishing Flag of a ship or a military unit or a distinguishing token emblem or badge such as a symbol of office The Royal Navy of the United Kingdom is the oldest of the British armed services (and is therefore known as the Senior Service) It is also flown by the Royal Yacht Squadron and ships escorting the Queen. History Founded on the 1st of June 1815 in the Thatched House Tavern in St James’s London as The Yacht TalkCommonewalth realm.--> The monarchy
In addition to the United Kingdom, several Commonwealth nations also use the White Ensign with their own flags in the canton. The Flag of the British Antarctic Territory and the Commissioners' flag of the Northern Lighthouse Board are also White Ensigns. The Flag of the British Antarctic Territory was granted in 1963 a year after the British Antarctic Territory was created The Northern Lighthouse Board ( NLB) is the General Lighthouse Authority for Scotland and the Isle of Man.
The first recognisable White Ensign appears to have been in use during the 16th century, consisting of a white field with a broad St George's cross, and a second St. George's cross in the canton. By 1630 the white ensign consisted of simply a white field, with a small St George's cross in the canton, which was consistent with the red and blue ensigns of the time. In 1707, the St. George's cross was reintroduced to the flag as a whole, though not as broad as before, and the Union Flag was placed in the canton. The Union Flag, also known as the Union Jack, is the national flag of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There was also a version of this flag without the overall St George's cross, which appears to have been for use in home waters only, though this flag appears to have fallen out of use by 1720. In 1801, after the Act of Union 1800, the flag was updated to include the new Union Flag in the canton, and so took on the form as used today. The phrase Act of Union 1800 (or sometimes Act of Union 1801) (Acht an Aontais 1800 is used to describe two complementary Acts whose official United Kingdom titles are The blue field of the Union Flag was darkened at this time at the request of the Admiralty, in the hope that the new flags would not require replacing as often as the previous design, due to fading of the blue. The Admiralty was formerly the authority in the United Kingdom responsible for the command of the Royal Navy. Throughout this period, the proportions of the flags changed. In 1687, the then Secretary of the Admiralty, Samuel Pepys, instructed that flags be of the ratio 11:18 (18 inches long for each breadth, 11 inches at the time). The office of Secretary to the Admiralty or (from the mid-18th century First Secretary to the Admiralty was formerly an important position within the Admiralty of Samuel Pepys, FRS (23 February 1633 – 26 May 1703 was an English naval administrator and Member of Parliament, who is now most famous for In the early 18th century, the breadth of cloth had been reduced to 10 inches, so the flags became 5:9. The 18th century lasted from 1701 to 1800 in the Gregorian calendar, in accordance with the Anno Domini / Common Era numbering system In 1837, the breadth was reduced for the final time to 9 inches, giving the current ratio of 1:2. 
Throughout this period, the Royal Navy used the White Ensign in conjunction with the Red and Blue, due to the rank structure employed at the time. The Red Ensign or " Red Duster " is a Flag that originated in the early 17th century as an Ensign flown by the Royal Navy. The Blue Ensign is a Flag, one of several British ensigns, used by certain organisations or territories associated with the United Kingdom. Each grade of admiral (rear-, vice- and full) was sub-divided into levels of seniority: red, white, and blue. Ships attached to an admiral's squadron would then fly the ensign appropriate to that particular admiral.
In 1864 the Admiralty decided to end the ambiguity caused by the Red Ensign being both a civil ensign and a naval ensign, and the White Ensign became the sole ensign of the Royal Navy. The civil Ensign (also known as merchant flag or merchant ensign) is the National flag flown by civil ships (merchant ships and others to denote The Royal Navy of the United Kingdom is the oldest of the British armed services (and is therefore known as the Senior Service)
During the Falklands War, British forces transmitted the following message to London to announce the liberation of South Georgia- Be pleased to inform Her Majesty that the White Ensign flies alongside the Union Flag in South Georgia. The Falklands War (Guerra de las Malvinas/Guerra del Atlántico Sur also called the Falklands Conflict/Crisis, was fought in 1982 between Argentina and the South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands ( SGSSI) is a British overseas territory in the southern Atlantic Ocean. God Save the Queen.
Commissioned ships and submarines wear the White Ensign at the stern whilst alongside during daylight hours and at the main-mast whilst under way. When alongside, the Union Jack (as distinct from the Union Flag, often referred to as the Union Jack) is flown from the jackstaff at the stem, and can only be flown under way either to signal a court-martial is in progress or to indicate the presence of an Admiral of the Fleet on-board (including the Lord High Admiral, the Monarch). The Union Flag, also known as the Union Jack, is the national flag of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. A jackstaff is a small vertical spar (pole in the bow of a ship on which a particular type of Flag, known as a jack, is flown . Ships of the Royal Yacht Squadron and ships escorting Queen Elizabeth II can also fly the White Ensign. History Founded on the 1st of June 1815 in the Thatched House Tavern in St James’s London as The Yacht For the ship see RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Context States headed by Elizabeth II Brunel's SS Great Britain, although a merchant ship, flew (and still flies, in dry dock) the White Ensign, apparently because its first master (an ex-Royal Navy man) brought it with him. History The SS Great Britain was designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Thomas Guppy, Christopher Claxton and William Patterson
On land, the White Ensign is flown at all naval shore establishments (which are commissioned warships), including all Royal Marines establishments. Permission has been granted to some other civilian buildings with naval connections to fly the White Ensign.  This includes the St Martin-in-the-Fields church in Trafalgar Square, London, which is the church of the parish of the Admiralty. St Martin-in-the-Fields is an Anglican church at the northeast corner of Trafalgar Square in the City of Westminster, London. Trafalgar Square is a square in central London, England. With its position in the heart of London it is a tourist attraction its trademark is Nelson's London ( ˈlʌndən is the capital and largest urban area in the United Kingdom. The Admiralty was formerly the authority in the United Kingdom responsible for the command of the Royal Navy. The Ensign is also displayed on the Cenotaph alongside the Union Flag (for the British Army) and the Royal Air Force Ensign. A cenotaph is a tomb or a Monument erected in honour of a person or group of persons whose remains are elsewhere The British Army is the land armed forces branch of the British Armed Forces. The Royal Air Force Ensign is the official Flag which is used to represent the Royal Air Force.
Special permission was granted to any individual or body to fly the White Ensign to mark Trafalgar Day in 2006. Trafalgar Day is the celebration of the victory won by Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson 's British fleet over the combined French and Spanish Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. 
The US destroyer Winston S. Churchill is the only US warship to fly the White Ensign along with the stars and stripes to honor its British namesake. Characteristics Winston S Churchill sets the final physical pattern for all subsequent Flight IIA ships by mounting the Mk
The White Ensign is also used by some football supporters, who write the name of their football club along the horizontal arm of the St. Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a Team sport played between two teams of eleven players and is widely considered A football team or a football club, in football (soccer is the collective name given to a number of players who play together in a Football game be it Association George's cross. This is technically illegal, as the White Ensign can only be used with the permission of the Royal Navy.
The White Ensign was historically used, in its unaltered form, by the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) and Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN), with the Blue Ensign of each of these Dominions (as they were then known) as a jack. The Royal Australian Navy ( RAN) is the naval branch of the Australian Defence Force. For the history of Canada's naval forces after 1968 see Canadian Forces Maritime Command The Royal Canadian Navy ( RCN) was the The Royal New Zealand Navy ( RNZN) (Maori Te Taua Moana, The Sea Army) is the maritime arm of the New Zealand Defence Force. The Blue Ensign is a Flag, one of several British ensigns, used by certain organisations or territories associated with the United Kingdom.
However, in 1965, with the adoption of the Canadian Flag, Canada stopped using the White Ensign on its naval vessels in favour of the new flag. The National Flag of Canada, also known as the Maple Leaf, and fr l'Unifolié ( French for "the one-leafed" is a red Flag In 1968, the RCN was incorporated into the unified Canadian Forces and the new Canadian Forces Maritime Command adopted a distinctive White Ensign incorporating the Canadian Flag in the canton and the badge of Maritime Command in the fly. The Canadian Forces (CF ( French: Forces canadiennes) are the unified Armed forces of Canada, governed by the National Defence "MARCOM" redirects here For the historical (1936–1950 U This flag, however, is used not as the ensign but as the jack and also as the basis of the Queen's colour of Maritime Command. Many Canadian veterans' organisations still use the White and Blue Ensigns unofficially as symbols of history and heritage.
During their involvement in Vietnam, the RAN and RNZN modified the White Ensign so as to avoid confusion with British vessels, which were not involved in the conflict. The Vietnam War, also known as the Second Indochina War, or the Vietnam Conflict, occurred in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia The modified RAN and RNZN White Ensigns still incorporate the Union Flag in the canton, but with the Southern Cross designs from each national flag (blue stars for the RAN and red stars for the RNZN) replacing the St. CRUX is a lightweight I686 -optimized Linux distribution targeted at experienced Linux users George's Cross.
Several other Commonwealth navies also use naval ensigns with a visual connection to the White Ensign. For example the Indian Navy and the South African Navy both have both retained a cross on a white field, with their own national flag in the canton, in place of the Union Flag. The Indian Navy is the naval branch of the armed forces of India. The South African Navy (SAN is the Navy of South Africa. History Formation The South African Navy can trace its official origins
|Royal Australian Navy Ensign||Australia||Royal Australian Navy|
|Barbados Naval Ensign||Barbados||Barbados Coast Guard|
|Canadian Forces Naval Jack||Canada||Canadian Forces Maritime Command|
|Fijian Naval Ensign||Fiji||Military of Fiji|
|Indian Navy Ensign||India||Indian Navy|
|Jamaican Naval Ensign||Jamaica||Military of Jamaica|
|Royal New Zealand Navy Ensign||New Zealand||Royal New Zealand Navy|
|South African Navy Ensign||South Africa||South African Navy|
The Flag of the British Antarctic Territory is a white ensign defaced with the territory's coat of arms. The Royal Australian Navy Ensign is the Ensign flown by ships of the Royal Australian Navy, correctly known as the Australian White Ensign or For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. The Royal Australian Navy ( RAN) is the naval branch of the Australian Defence Force. Barbados ( Portuguese word for bearded-ones, bɑrˈbeɪdoʊz -dɒs situated just east of the Caribbean Sea, is an independent Island nation The Barbados Coast Guard is the maritime division of the Barbados Defence Force. Country to "Dominion of Canada" or "Canadian Federation" or anything else please read the Talk Page "MARCOM" redirects here For the historical (1936–1950 U Fiji (Matanitu ko Viti फ़िजी officially the Republic of the Fiji Islands (Matanitu Tu-Vaka-i-koya ko Viti फ़िजी द्वीप समूह गणराज्य The Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF with a total manpower of 3500 men is one of the smallest militaries in the world India, officially the Republic of India (भारत गणराज्य inc-Latn Bhārat Gaṇarājya; see also other Indian languages) is a country The Indian Navy is the naval branch of the armed forces of India. Jamaica (ˈdʒəˈmeɪkə} is an Island nation of the Greater Antilles, in length and as much as in width situated in the Caribbean Sea. Jamaican Defence Forces New Zealand is an Island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses (the North Island and the South Island The Royal New Zealand Navy ( RNZN) (Maori Te Taua Moana, The Sea Army) is the maritime arm of the New Zealand Defence Force. The Republic of South Africa (also known by other official names) is a country located at the southern tip of the continent of Africa The South African Navy (SAN is the Navy of South Africa. History Formation The South African Navy can trace its official origins The Flag of the British Antarctic Territory was granted in 1963 a year after the British Antarctic Territory was created The Coat of Arms of the British Antarctic Territory were first granted in 1952, when the territory was still a dependency of the Falkland Islands (along This is the only white ensign in use by a British Overseas Territory. The British Overseas Territories are fourteen territories that are under the Sovereignty of the United Kingdom, but which do not form part of the United Kingdom
A White Ensign, without the St. Patrick's Cross, defaced with a blue lighthouse in the fly, is the Commissioners' flag of the Northern Lighthouse Board. The Northern Lighthouse Board ( NLB) is the General Lighthouse Authority for Scotland and the Isle of Man. This flag is unique as it uses a pre-1801 Union Flag in the canton.