My hometown of Coventry was the 2021 UK City of Culture. Shortly after it was announced the BBC launched a competition to right the historic wrong of Coventry not having a flag, naturally I jumped at the chance! Here's my entry & design process.
Coventry’s three spires have dominated the skyline for
most of the cities’ history.
The city has an industrial heritage with many industries & inventions being associated with it.
Lady Godiva has been a Coventry symbol since her famous, but likely fictional, ride through the city.
Appearing on the coat of arms, multiple sports team logos & most bollards across the city.
Coventry was bombed heavily during the Blitz, the Phoenix has been a city symbol since.
Not a Coventry symbol, but an abstract C was used well in the flag of Colorado, USA (pictured).
Red, Green & Gold - Coventry's civic colours
Blues & White - Coventry's council & sporting colours
THE SPIRES & STRIPES
A tricolour featuring stripes of:
Dark blue for the industrial past, White for the peaceful present,
Sky blue for the bright future.
In the centre three spires pierce the sky as they do in reality.
MARCH OF GODIVA
Lady Godiva on her famous white horse looks forward towards Coventry’s future. A spire shape is placed behind her to reference the cathedral spires.
A strong and powerful elephant on a hard industrial cog to create an image of Coventrian grit. On several occasions Coventry was briefly the capital of England so I referenced the English flag with a dark cross.
Sadly it was one entry per person,
I selected the Spires & Stripes.
A tricolour gives a nice balance with or without wind & the spires create a unique variation.
I also chose it for personal reasons, as a teenager my friends and I used to hang out (read: loiter) around the cathedral grounds. As Coventry is my hometown and vexilology is an interest of mine, it only felt right to go with the option that held the most personal meaning for me.
THE SPIRES AND STRIPES
3:5 proportion horizontal tricolour of sky blue, white and navy blue, with a defacement of three navy spires in centre.
From hundreds of entries, my flag was chosen by the UK Flag Institute as one of the six to be voted on by the public! All flags went under varying levels of redesign before being revealed, mine included. The candidates are below.
THE PUBLIC VOTE
After a couple of radio interviews, a few weeks and thousands of votes, the people of Coventry chose their flag.
And the results were...
*sad trombone sound*
My design came second to the only Lady Godiva flag in the running, in hindsight, Lady Godiva is the perfect symbol for Coventry, but I went with my gut and ensured myself a "what if I submitted that other one" thought every time I see the flag, you live and you learn!
BUT! I'm just happy my hometown finally has a flag, it's grown on me!