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Bridgewater, Nova Scotia (Canada)

Last modified: 2023-09-02 by rob raeside
Keywords: nova scotia | bridgewater |
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[Bridgewater, Nova Scotia] image located by Minh Tan, 26 August 2023

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Bridgewater is a town in Lunenburg County, Nova Scotia, at the navigable limit of the LaHave River. It is the largest town in the South Shore region, nicknamed "The Main Street of the South Shore."

New flag 2023

Bridgewater has a new flag. It's from an Aug 23 pay-walled story in the local Lighthouse Now news source.

In spring, residents were asked to vote on 3 new flag designs. All had the Town's wordmark logo. The choice chosen was the inevitable outcome of a flag with a lot of text in it, then. The chosen flag highlights the LaHave River with all the blue, rather than the green land on which the town is based.

The Facebook post with the whole story is at

In early May, 2023, the Town of Bridgewater (the "Town") requested people to vote on one of three new flag designs. One such means of outreach was on Facebook like in this post. All three designs had the Town's wordmark logo on it as shown below. When questioned why there was text (lettering) on the flag, or at least why there wasn't an option without text as per the good flag design principles in Good Flag, Bad Flag, the Town replied that it was actually in a report and discussed at a "Town Council Discussion Session". When questioned why staff had ignored it, Patrick Hirtle, the Bridgewater Communications Manager, responded that "staff didn't ignore it at all". Rather, they deemed their situation to be an exception allowed for by Good Flag, Bad Flag principles because they had been authorized "to utilize approved Town of Bridgewater branding in the development of a new flag -- something that was approved by Council in 2015". As such, Town Council chose the three designs shown for voting on, all with text, from among eight choices, some of which had no text. In late August, 2023, the winning design was revealed.


Bruce Walsh
A new flag would be great but there is a reason that wording is excluded from flag design. There is information on that here along with the elements that make a flag work. ... Go back to the drawing board please.

Town of Bridgewater
This exact document was actually referenced in the staff report that went to a Town Council Discussion Session on the topic.

Bruce Walsh
Town of Bridgewater makes sense and thanks for getting back, but why did the staff ignore it?

Patrick Hirtle - Bridgewater Communications Manager
Bruce, with respect, staff didn't ignore it at all.

Eight different options were presented to Council in the report as a starting point for discussion and direction. Some included no words (Town of Bridgewater symbol only), some included the Town of Bridgewater brandmark with wording.

All designs followed the basic tenets of the NAVA guide: simple, meaningful symbolism in colours and patterns, basic colours (all colours are from the existing and approved Town of Bridgewater branding guide), distinctive design (this is subjective, but the designs are certainly distinct among other municipal flags in Nova Scotia. The fifth principle discourages the use of lettering, however the guide also notes that there are exceptions to every rule, providing it is done with purpose and caution. The purpose, in this case, was to utilize approved Town of Bridgewater branding in the development of a new flag -- something that was approved by Council in 2015.

Council ultimately asked staff to seek public feedback on three of the eight concepts in the report, which were included in the survey and all of which use the wordmark branding.

Minh Tan, 26 August 2023

Previous Flag

[Bridgewater, Nova Scotia] 1:2 image by Eugene Ipavec
Source: Canadian City Flags, Raven 18

Text and image(s) from Canadian City Flags, Raven 18 (2011), courtesy of the North American Vexillological Association, which retains copyright. Image(s) by permission of Eugene Ipavec.


The flag of the Town of Bridgewater has a white field with a broad blue saltire (X-shaped cross). The width of the saltire's bars is one-fourth the height of the flag. In the centre is a white section, half the width of the flag, creating an unusual form of the Canadian pale design. It bears a red Canadian maple leaf, over three-fourths the height of the flag. The blue bars in the hoist and fly panels are connected by red trapezoids whose longest sections border the central section. Surmounting the maple leaf is the town seal, slightly less than half the height of the flag: a yellow ring, bordered by a rope on the outside and black dots on the inside, and inscribed TOWN OF BRIDGEWATER N.S. above and INCORPORATED FEB. 13, 1899 below, all in black sans-serif letters. Inside the ring is a naturalistic depiction of the early settlement, showing two buildings in brown with smoke rising from one chimney into a white sky, with a row of trees and rolling hills in green rising from a broad blue river, which in turn is spanned by a bridge in yellow running from the upper right to the lower left.
Rob Raeside, Canadian City Flags, Raven 18, 2011


Bridgewater is the largest town on Nova Scotia’s South Shore, and often referred to as “Main Street of the South Shore”. It is located at the navigable limit of the LaHave River and was named for the first bridge built there in the early 1800s. The red trapezoids signify the bridges over the river (for “Bridge”), the blue bars signify both the river (“Water”) and the provincial flag, and the maple leaf comes from the Canadian flag. The town’s seal depicts a small community, nestled in drumlin topography (glacial deposits), with a bridge across the LaHave River prominently displayed.
Rob Raeside
, Canadian City Flags, Raven 18, 2011


Adopted by the town council in August 1993.
Rob Raeside
, Canadian City Flags, Raven 18, 2011


John and Judith Scott.
Rob Raeside
, Canadian City Flags, Raven 18, 2011