The flag is the armorial banner of the arms attributed to the local Dark Age ruler, Edwin of Tegeingl, a former kingdom that covered much of the territory of Flintshire.
The arms bore a black engrailed cross, i.e. a cross with scalloped edges and floral ends – heraldically described as “flory”, on a white field between four choughs, a bird once likely to have been widespread in the vicinity, in black and red.
One of the earliest known appearances of the arms of Edwin Tegeingl is in a window at Llanrhos church, probably erected by, or commemorating Richard ap Hywel of Mostyn (d.1540).
They are also seen on this plaque dated c.1550 bearing Thomas Mostyn’s initials
and they can be found above the entrance to the great hall at Mostyn, dated 1623.
and on a garden wall, uncovered by staff following removal of ivy. This stone once formed part of the 16th century lintel over the great hall fireplace.
Another early version is seen here in a late-16th century Welsh pedigree roll, probably by the poet Simwnt Fychan
The arms are also found on the historic Flintshire house “Fferm”, thought to have been built in 1607
are at Saint James Church Hollywell
and are seen here carved into a 17th century oak draw-leaf table.
The Tegeingl arms have also been used by the Flintshire county scouts as their badge
as proudly sported by this troupe of St. Asaph Scouts in 1947
In the 1920s, before receiving a formal award of arms, Flintshire County Council, created in 1889, adopted a rather grand depiction of the Edwin Tegeingl arms as its seal, incorporating both the name Tegeingl and the year of its inception, between two Welsh dragons
This seal subsequently appeared on a certificate of thanks, presented on behalf of all the people of Flintshire every Flintshire man who served and the families of those who died, in World War One.
On the 12th of May 1938 the council was formally granted a coat of arms which augmented the original Edwin design with silver circles on each arm and a voided diamond at the centre of the cross
The council’s augmented version of the arms appears on the front cover
of the ‘Guide to the Flintshire Record Office’, published by the county’s first archivist M. Bevan-Evans in 1955 and can be seen on this plaque celebrating the county golf union
and on the prize awarded to the winners of the “Flintshire Knockout Shield”
a county cricket competition.
It is also the insignia on this Flintshire Service vehcile from 1960
and appears on this image from 1958
depicting representatives from the county at the Festival of Wales Pageant in Cardiff. An early example of usage as a quasi flag!
Following the successful registration of flags for Caernarfonshire, Meirionnydd and Anglesey, several local people in the county sought to establish a flag for Flintshire too, identifying the above arms as the indisputable county emblem. A campaign to see this design registered was conducted based on a Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Flintshire-Flag/209333945862298 . A formal registration request was submitted to the Flag Institute and the proposal was duly registered on the basis of the extensive local support it received from county organisations and politicians and its historical association with the county stretching back centuries.
With thanks to Shaun Evans and Brady Ells for their research in this post.