ALLIANCE Councillor Michael Long (Castlereagh) has said he is dismayed to learn that elected representatives were not informed of the Queen’s visit to the Braniel estate.
Cllr Long said that the hoisting of a Royal Standard in the estate (at the junction of the Glen Road and Knock dual carriageway) could only signify that the Queen is in residence, since it is disrespectful to fly it on other occasions.
Cllr Long said: “It is highly unusual for Buckingham Palace to breach protocol in such a blatant fashion by not announcing a royal visit, so I suppose I will just have to write to Her Majesty for an explanation.
“There is no way that any self-respecting British citizen would hoist the Queen’s personal flag – the Royal Standard – unless she was in residence. Of course, it is only supposed to fly from government buildings, and the Queen is unlikely to stay in a lamppost.
“One can only presume that this was a flying visit by Her Majesty. After the fires at Windsor and Buckingham in recent years, perhaps she wanted to check that this year’s Eleventh Night bonfire will be controlled properly. Her Majesty is a stickler for the rules, so I hope that her loyal subjects will honour her by returning her Royal Standard to the Palace before the corgis notice it has gone.”
Rules for flying flags: http://www.northernireland-legislation.hmso.gov.uk/sr/sr2000/20000347.htm