Ministry of Defence spending on flags more than doubles to £231,000 in attempt to save the Union
Ministry of Defence spending on flags has more than doubled to £231,096.92, in what the UK Government says is an effort to shore up the Union.
£54,564.50 was spent on Union Jacks alone, a jump of 115 per cent on the same figures in 2018/19, according to a Freedom of Information request.
The overall cost related only to flags bought centrally by the MoD and did not include military units buying their own flags.
A UK government source told the Telegraph newspaper that the spending was part of an attempt to make the flag more visible.
“The Government is proud to fly the Union flag as a reminder of our history and the ties that bind us,” they said.
“A large number of flags are used for ceremonial and non-ceremonial events, including national commemorations and state visits, and will regularly be replaced when damaged beyond repair.”
The cost of making the Union Jack more visible ran into controversy in Wales after the Welsh Secretary had to scrap plans for a massive flag decal on the side of a Cardiff building after costs ballooned.
Cardiff council officers had approved planning permission for a 105-foot high flag on Tŷ William Morgan tax office, but it was jettisoned after it turned out the final cost would be as much as £180,000 to the taxpayer.
The UK government said the secretary of state halted plans because it “did not represent good value for the taxpayer”.
The First Minister, Mark Drakeford had expressed concern that the giant flag would only push more people towards independence.
Mark Drakeford said that his objection “is not to a union flag per se; it is whether a 32 m tall, 8 m wide union flag is a proportionate way of proceeding”.
“If the purpose of their actions is to strengthen the union, then they need to ask themselves whether or not a union jack on the scale and size that they are proposing is likely to achieve that ambition,” he said.
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