Last modified: 2007-12-22 by bruce berry
Keywords: south africa | point yacht club | royal cape yacht club | royal natal yacht club |
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The present constitution of the Point Yacht Club was adopted in 1882 and laid
down the following Club flags:
image by Clay Moss, 04 Nov 2007
Club Flag - The club flag shall be a rectangular red flag with a white cross with a white lighthouse in the upper canton next to the staff.
Club Burgee - The club burgee shall be a red pennant with a white cross with a white lighthouse in the upper canton next to the staff.
by Clay Moss, 04 Nov 2007
In a letter dated 19 April 1937, the Under Secretary of State in the Dominions Office in London advised the South African High Commissioner that the Admiralty had approved the application of the Point Yacht Club for permission to use a red ensign defaced with the badge of the Club, namely a white lighthouse standing on brown rocks, in the lower fly. The decision to grant this Club a defaced red ensign might have been taken to obviate any confusion with the defaced blue ensign of the Commissioners of Northern Lighthouses which is also defaced by a light-house, but could have also have been influenced by the fact the Club's flags were predominantly red.
South Africa left the British Commonwealth on 31 May 1961 and in 1973 the Point Yacht Club ceased to be listed as a Privileged Yacht Club (Source: SAVA Journal 3/94: The Union Jack over Southern and Central Africa, 1795 - 1994 [brl94] by FG Brownell).
Bruce Berry, 04 Nov 2007
In March 1914 the newly-named Cape Yacht Club, whose predecessor had been the
Table Bay Yacht Club, applied for a Royal Warrant. In reply to this request the
Governor-General advised the Club that His Majesty the King was "graciously
pleased to approve the title Royal to the Cape Yacht Club". On 26 June 1914, the
Governor-General, Viscount Gladstone, approved a recommendation that an
Admiralty Warrant be issued authorizing the use of a plan blue ensign, but then
World War I intervened.
After the end of the War, during which all Admiralty Warrants for privileged Yacht Club Ensigns were suspended, the Club applied for, and was granted, the privilege of a Blue Ensign defaced in the lower fly with a white anchor ensigned with a Tudor Crown proper. Members of the Club who wished to avail themselves of this privilege had to make application through the Club. Warrants were again suspended during World War II.
The Club's defaced blue ensign was flown from the flagstaff at the Clubhouse until 1966. At that time only three members were authorized to wear it on their yachts. South Africa had by that time left the Commonwealth and a special meeting of the Club resolved that the ensign should be replaced by the South African national flag. The Warrant was duly returned to the Admiralty (Source: SAVA Journal 3/94: The Union Jack over Southern and Central Africa, 1795 - 1994 [brl94] by FG Brownell).
The Club burgee is triangular, per pale red and blue, charged on the red with a white anchor ensigned with a Tudor Crown proper. The burgee has a narrow border around the edges.
Bruce Berry, 03 Nov 2007
image by Clay Moss, 03 Nov 2007
As a matter to note, I have been in contact with the RCYC's Commodore, and the
Club is currently in the process of getting their warrant to utilize their
ensign reinstated. I have prepared the above image" to show what a new ensign
might look like with a (modern) St. Edward's crown.
Clay Moss, 03 Nov 2007
image by Clay Moss, 02 Nov 2007
The Royal Natal Yacht Club had its origins in the Natal Yacht Club which was
founded in 1858 and on which the title "Royal" was conferred on 17 February
An Admiralty Warrant was issued on 15 May 1894 for a distinctive blue ensign, bearing in the fly "The Natal Arms surmounted by a crown" for use by the Royal Natal Yacht Club. The device in the fly is a slightly simplified version of that depicted in the Natal colonial seal, excluding the circumscription. It is mainly gold (yellow), with some white detail in the upper crown and in the oval shield of the Royal Arms, while the cap and jewels of the upper crown are red. The placing of the device directly on the
blue field ensured that this Ensign would not be confused with the Natal Blue Ensign, with which it otherwise bears a striking similarity.
This privileged ensign has been in use for more than a century and unlike the other South African privileged yacht ensigns of the Royal Cape and Point Yacht Clubs, it was not relinquished after South Africa left the Commonwealth on 31 May 1961 (Source: SAVA Journal 3/94: The Union Jack over Southern and Central Africa, 1795 - 1994 [brl94] by FG Brownell).
The Club burgee, which is also in current use, bears on a triangular white field a blue cross fimbriated in red, with the Royal Crown proper in the canton.
Bruce Berry, 02 Nov 2007
image by Clay Moss, 02 Nov 2007
This posting marks the first time that I have sparked a club initiated change in
their ensign. Apparently, nobody has bothered to draw up the RNYC ensign or the
badge in quite a while. The above illustration represents the club's original
ensign. When I submitted this to the club for their critique, I
did so not realizing that the UK's Coat-of-Arms had changed slightly over the
past 100 plus years. Evidently, in 1894, the lion faced dexter or to the
observer's right towards the fly end of the ensign, and was not wearing a crown.
In the current UK Arms, the lion faces the observer and is wearing a crown (top
Anyway, I submitted an RNYC ensign with a the current version of the Coat -of -Arms. Needless to say that RNYC's officials realised the error. However, they liked what I had done, and in their next board meeting, changed their defacement to reflect the current version of the UK Arms.
Among other things, this means that the new badge will have three royal crowns on it. One on the lion's head, one topping off the CoA, and the big crown over everything. As a matter to note, while the lion's crown and the crown on top of the Arms will be "modern day St. Edward's" in style, the big crown over all will be the old Victorian style St. Edward's crown, reflecting the fact that the club gained its royal status during Queen Victoria's reign.
The RNYC's Commodore and I discussed the fact that the RNYC's defacement is in fact the most complex defacement in the British ensign 'universe' and could do with a good overhaul. Simultaneously, the club takes a measure of pride in having the most complex badge and had no plans to make a change beyond recognizing the changes in the British Coat-of-Arms.
I reckon until supplies are exhausted, both ensigns illustrated above can be recognized as "official" RNYC ensigns, although the top version is now correct.
Clay Moss, 02 Nov 2007
The date is not that of the original warrant. In 1893 the British consul in Nice
had asked the Board of Trade whether a British yacht that had been lent to an
could fly the US flag. It was decided that Section 105 of the Merchant Shipping Act of 1854 was not concerned with temporary hiring or giving of a yacht, only with the
intentional concealment of national character, and therefore a foreign flag could be flown on a British vessel loaned or hired to a foreigner.
As a result the warrants for special ensigns that had been issued to yacht clubs were amended to include;
"The ensign shall not without our authority in writing be worn on board a vessel belonging to the ..........Yacht Club while such vessel is lent, on hire or otherwise, to any person not being a member of the club, or, when being a member of the club, is not a natural born or naturalised British subject."
All existing warrants were cancelled and new warrants issued, all with the date 15 May 1894. [National Archives (PRO) MT 9/471]
In the 1892 edition of Lloyd's Yacht Register the Royal Natal is listed as having a special ensign, and it is likely that the original warrant was issued at about the same
time that the title 'Royal' was granted in February 1891.
David Prothero, 03 Nov 2007