Head of Flag

 

Head of Flag  

Our Head of Flag this year is Muiris Capon-Telford. This is a key role for a pupil to hold here at RHS; Muiris works out a rota to fit around the busy timetable of co-curricular activities, and is responsible for ensuring that there is a bugler in attendance at every flag ceremony, twice a day, no matter the weather, in order to maintain this naval tradition. 

We asked Muiris how it felt to be selected as Head of Flag: “I was excited but also nervous. I have watched older pupils carry out the role since I joined RHS in Year 7 and it was one of my aims to be Head of Flag. I am keen to ensure everyone has pride in their bugling and other duties involved in the flag ceremony.”   

The RHS Flag is an Admiralty-approved blue ensign which has been defaced with the Greenwich Hospital arms.  

Muiris described his daily routine:   

“The daily routine of Flag is preparing my uniform, bulling (polishing) my boots and getting into my number 1s. I arrive at the front of school at around 08:05 to warm up but also to meet the flag party from the house on duty. We then march up to the flagpole at 08:10 and wait for the bells in the clocktower to chime at 08:15. After the alert from the bugler and the general salute, the flag goes up the flagpole. After this the flag party inwards face and then salutes the flag with the bugler playing the salute tune. Then we march back down to the front of school, where we dismiss.   

Every afternoon the same thing happens but the flag party takes the flag down to the sunset tune, instead of the general salute. On Fridays there is whole house flag, where all pupils from one house march up to the flagpole in squads. The Heads of School and the Senior Leadership Team watch and are saluted as the flag party marches back to school from the flagpole. Before this happens, the house is inspected to make sure their uniform is smart.  

Pupils, staff and visitors in the vicinity of the front of school and not taking part in the flag ceremony are asked to stand still or to stop driving their cars whilst the Flag ceremony takes place.”  

This tradition is so important and is a vital part of pupil life here at RHS. Flag has been a tradition at the school since the move from Greenwich in 1933. It comes from the Navy where on every ship and all bases a flag is raised in the morning and lowered in the evening. Muiris comments, “This tradition is important as it keeps the heritage link with the Navy but also allows pupils to walk in the footsteps of other pupils before them.”  

This year Muiris was also the bugler for our school Remembrance Divisions as well as at Stutton War Memorial.