The European Flag

The President delivered the inaugural Presidential Invitation Lecture which will now be a feature of the October Evening Meeting each year to commemorate the foundation of the Society. The subject chosen by Mr. McCarthy was yet another important element of this Special Commemorative Service – the 50th Anniversary of the European Flag.

eu flag 

The story of the development and final adoption of this flag was a fascinating tale of discovery uncovering the very peripheral role, played by the then Chief Herald of Ireland, Mr. Gerard Slevin, in the design of this flag. Mr. McCarthy researched the on-line archives of the Council of Europe and discussed the matter with former colleagues of the late Mr. Slevin – all pointing to a non-Irish source for the Flag.

Following Mr. McCarthy’s lecture a very up-beat Director of the European Movement in Ireland, Mr. Brendan Kiely, drew on the significance of the flag and stressed the importance of the European ideal.

A Service of Peace & Reconciliation for Europe was concluded with the European anthem. The evening ended with a splendid wine reception provided by the European Commission Office in Dublin.

Whilst, other names continue to emerge, will we ever know for sure who the actual designer of the Flag was? Sadly, it seems that officially sponsored sources, including obituaries published in 1997, advocating that an Irishman designed the European Flag cannot now be substantiated.