About Us

2 February 2022

Flag flying at Historic Environment Scotland 2023

Where possible, we follow the Scottish Government Flag Flying Guidance for Properties in Care and our offices with flagpoles.

The gateway to a castle on a sunny day with three flags flying above the entrance.

Historic Environment Scotland is a non-departmental public body. We ensure our historic environment is cared for, valued and makes a real difference to people’s lives.

One of our roles is to look after over 300 historic places on behalf of Scottish Ministers. Around 35 of these Properties in Care have flagpoles.

Where possible, we follow the Scottish Government Flag Flying Guidance for Properties in Care and our offices with flagpoles, such as Longmore House in Edinburgh. The guidance on which flag is flown is dependent on how many flagpoles there are at a site.

Property in Care Number of Flagpoles
Aberdour Castle 1
Abernethy Round Tower 1
Arbroath Abbey 1
Blackness Castle 1
Borough of Birsay 1
Caerlaverock Castle 1
Cardoness Castle 1
Castle Campbell 1
Dirleton Castle 2
Doune Castle 1
Dryburgh Abbey 1
Dumbarton Castle 2
Dundonald Castle 1
Edinburgh Castle 10
Edzell Castle 1
Elcho Castle 1
Fort George 1
Hackness Battery and Martello Tower 1
Huntingtower Castle 1
Inchcolm Abbey 1
Jedburgh Abbey 1
Kisimul Castle 1
Linlithgow Palace 2
Meigle Museum 1
Melrose Abbey 1
Newark Castle 1
Rothesay Castle 1
Smailholm Tower 1
Spynie Palace 1
St Andrews Castle 2
St Andrews Cathedral 2
St Andrews West Port 1
Stirling Castle 6
Sweetheart Abbey 1
Tantallon Castle 1
Threave Castle 1
Urquhart Castle 2

Dates that we aim to mark at some or all of the Properties in Care with flagpoles include:

  • 1 February 2023 - Start of LGBT History Month
  • 6 May 2023 - The King's Coronation Day
  • 17 May 2023 - International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia
  • 12 November 2023 - Remembrance Day
  • 14 November 2023 - Official celebration of His Majesty's Birthday
  • 30 November 2023 - St Andrew's Day 

We may be unable to follow the flag flying guidance in some situations, such as:

  • Due to COVID-19, flag flying dates may be subject to change
  • at unstaffed sites with flagpoles (Abernethy Round Tower and St Andrews West Port)
  • where we do not have the relevant flag available
  • in unexpected circumstances, such as extreme weather or essential repair works to flagpoles

Edinburgh Castle, Stirling Castle and Fort George, as military flag flying stations, fly the Union flag on an ongoing basis. Most of the flagpoles at Edinburgh Castle are the responsibility of the Ministry of Defence, while Stirling Castle is the Head Quarters of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.

We review our approach to flag flying at Properties in Care every calendar year.