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Flag concepts for the South Island: Wikis


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New Zealand is a unitary nation rather than a federation, and as such there has been no specific flag used to represent the two main islands or most of the minor islands other than the national flag (with the notable exceptions of the Chatham Islands and Stewart Island/Rakiura).

There are occasional calls for some degree of autonomy for the South Island — most notably in the form of the NZ South Island Party which contested several seats at a New Zealand general election in the 1990s. There is, however, little suggestion of any real move for autonomy, and no active mass movement towards separation or federalisation.

The sense of separate identity for the south has sparked the interest of many vexillologists (flag researchers) and vexillographers (flag designers) into possible designs for a South island flag. Several of these have gained a small degree of acceptance as designs to represent the South Island as an entity, as opposed to simply part of a larger whole (which, due to the larger population of the North Island, tends to be subsumed by that of its neighbour). Some of these designs are shown below.


James Dignan's concept

Proposed New Zealand South Island flag.svg

Vexillologist James Dignan proposed a flag including the Southern Cross stars that appear on the New Zealand national flag, with a depiction of the Southern Alps (the white peak) and the forests and fields of the south (the green inset). The Southern Alps are the South Island's most prominent geological feature, and agriculture and forestry the main primary industries, making this concept an appropriate representation. This flag has gained a small degree of acceptance, appearing at several sporting events and rallies in the South Island, and as an image on some merchandise items.

Dean Thomas' concept


Vexillologist Dean Thomas proposed a flag that reflects early Māori Flags (ensigns defaced by lettering). In this concept, the white background represents the snow of the Southern Alps while the red stripe represents the people (Māori and European populace). The New Zealand White Ensign is placed in the canton so as to blend in with the white background color. Te Wai Pounamu is the Māori name for the South Island.

Kym Parsons' concept

Zealandia Proposal 1.PNG

This flag was designed by Kym Parsons, a supporter of South Island Independence and is a relatively new addition to the list of proposed South Island flags. This flag is promoted by the political lobby group South Island First through the distribution of motor vehicle bumper stickers.

It comprises a Nordic Cross with white background representing the Southern Alps, with a green cross representing the lush bush and farmland of the South Island and blue representing the ocean.

The general impression is reminiscent of the flags of the Nordic nations.

Southern Freedom Flag

South Island Flag.jpg

This flag was created by a group known as 'Southern Freedom', a group dedicated to promoting South Island nationalism.

The Southern Cross represents the South Island's position in the world. The white zigzags represent the Southern Alps.[1]

See also


  1. ^ Southern Freedom—Our Flag


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