New Zealand’s new flag designs: Which should they choose? 161



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Since the beginning of this year, an official New Zealand Government campaign has asked the public to submit flag designs and choose what they’d like as their national banner going forward.

After a long independent panel process, 40 designs have been published, and four of those will be put to the public vote.

The existing New Zealand flag has been in use since 1902, however this is the first time in history that New Zealanders have been able to have their say on a flag design.

The Panel have reviewed all 10,292 suggested flag designs and announced this official long list:

Some have called the designs disappointing despite the more abstract submitted flags.

In an open letter from the panel, they said they came to a decision on the 40 flags after “thousands of Kiwis across a range of communities told us when they shared what is special to them about New Zealand”.

“A potential new flag should unmistakably be from New Zealand and celebrate us as a progressive, inclusive nation that is connected to its environment, and has a sense of its past and a vision for its future”.

Cultural, vexillology and art and design experts were asked to review the longlisted designs, and due diligence of all 40 will be carried out, as well as intellectual property checks.

Pax Zwanikken, a New Zealander based in Sydney, made the longlist twice but said he didn’t feel the entire process necessary and PM John Key’s decision has been costly (around $26 million).

“I think there is a strong sentiment that this process isn’t something the public really asked for at this time, but rather something pushed upon them,” he said, reports The Guardian.

“But that said, it’s happening now so I think we should turn our energy towards making sure that this money isn’t wasted and that we take the opportunity to create something good out of it”.

Once the longlist is taken down to a further four design, they will be put to a public vote in a November referendum.

A second referendum, to be held in March 2016, see the current flag and the preferred alternative design go head to head.

If the current flag wins, it’s safe to say Australia may never give the controversial idea a spin.


Tell us, which flag design do you like best? Do you think that New Zealand should change its flag? Should Australia?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. LEAVE IT ALONE…GOOD MEN DIED FIGHTING UNDER THAT FLAG (just change for change sake)

    3 REPLY
    • Changing a nations flags does not deny the history or sacrifices of its service men and women. For example, Canada changed their flag in 1965 from a blue ensign design to the familiar maple leaf flag we know today. This change did not stop Canadian’s respecting their war dead.

  2. That is for New Zealander’s to decide, I am sure they can manage to choose just fine without any Aussie help

  3. Put the money towards a new hospital in Dunedin. That’s where it is needed.

    3 REPLY
    • Yes money should be spent where needed ?Dunedin hospital needs up grading and is in a terrible state.If John Key wants it changed then he can pay for it out of his pocket. The goverment say they haven’t got the money to do things upgrade hospitals etc but can find $26m to get a new flag.Unbeliveable.Perhaps they could do away with all the perks they get.No free flights etc after they leave Goverment.

  4. Time will tell if their flag tugs at their heart strings.
    Lets hope we can keep an historic and loyal flavor if we follow the same road to a new flag.
    Change is nt always for the better . The commonwealth did exist and gives us a community with ideals to be proud of. Uniting people around the world. Whether they are republicans or still have the monarchy.

    7 REPLY
    • what a rambling load of rubbish Lolly, the Commonwealth came about when the British invaded other countries and took their land, it has nothing to do with the NZ flag

    • and while we at it …get rid of the old biddy across the pond is laughable and down right embarrassing …that an Australian cannot be head of state …under the present system …

    • Oh dear
      Maybe you should return to your ancestry lands most of them probably commonwealth countries and maybe one from maybe germany or eastern europe and look at the European community today!!!!
      I merely say we have a history that is part of our inheritance.
      I did not get into a monarchist v republican verbal attack.

    • My family came here as Convicts Lolly Hansen and paved the way for your family to immigrate here, I have no loyalty to GB..I am an Australian.

    • Your one who is trying to push your views onto us, if your not happy with Australians having an opinion, then your the one who should pack your bags and pee off to where you came from

    • Sorry your so narrow minded and so lacking in ability to express your point of views with above the sewer comments.
      I too have convict and free settler origins . Fortunately i listen to others and take it into consideration if put well.
      Not your unintelligent ranting

  5. make changes to the flag sounds simple but the meaning and the costs could be incredible. Stick with what you’ve got. Change for the sake of change is silly. I guess if there is a referendum at least people can have a say, to me it has the potential to be divisive, but to get this far, I guess the issue already is that.

  6. No we shoud not change our flag! Let Newzealand do what they want but our forfathersfought under that flag so we may be free.

    4 REPLY
    • Correct, check history, the flag was different through the war years. And it is time we have our own identity. England goes not support us in anyway, except we still pay for the royal family.

    • My family has fought in all war except for those wars from Vietnam on and I can promise you they did not fight for the flag, they fought to save this country, my dad was only 16 years old when he enlisted and went to New Guinea and fought there

  7. Each one of the 40 shortlisted designs is better than the current one. Hopefully, the people of N.Z. will decide for a new flag and, hopefully, Australians will do likewise.

    25 REPLY
    • Because, Rod, the colonial era is over. Both N.Z. and Australia are mature countries and they both need a flag that represents them – not a flag that represents a foreign country.

    • As the majority of Aussies are British or of British decent…I don’t see your point Berndt & Dennis? As in, “If it isn’t broken, why fix it”?

      1 REPLY
      • The horse and cart are not broken either Janette……………….Thank you.

    • Henry, I respect your opinion, but as an Australian, personally, I find it embarrassing that we perceive ourselves so weak that we are unable to stand on our own feet.

    • Forgive who for what, Alan ? Forgive the U.K. for using colonial troops as cannon fodder ? Sending troops into unneccessary battles ?

    • When you migrated Berndt you swore Allegiance to the flag of both Aus & NZ. Now you’re a ” Turncoat” re emigrate at your earliest convenience

    • My grandfather was an ANZAC and I hate to be the one to tell you but the ANZACS are all dead now 🙂 They won’t be condemning or forgiving anyone. Chris Stringer you have NO authority to Demand ANYONE leave any country..your just a shit kicker like the rest of us

    • Both wars, the 1st & 2nd World Wars were started by Germany wanting world domination…”Berndt”, a German name? If so, no wonder you find the Union Jack on the Australian & New Zealand flags so offensive…they “whupped” Germany’s ass…TWICE lol!

    • Chris does not speak for anyone but himself, Berndt . . . thankfully! I’m embarrassed to read his aggressive posts which make huge, uninformed assumptions. However, I’m opposed to changing the Aussie flag at this time simply because it’s a salute (pardon the pun) to our English origins. Now if we become a Republic, then that would be a different story and the perfect time consider a change, imho.

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