THE NATIONAL FLAG
On May 28, 1962 the historic Independence Conference between the British Government and the delegations representing the Colony of Trinidad and Tobago took place at Malborough House in London. On June 8, 1962 the Right Honourable the Secretary of State for the Colonies announced from London that it had been decided at the Conference that the Colony was to be granted Independence on August 31, 1962.
This new status of nationhood meant that Trinidad and Tobago would need to have its distinctive national emblems, a National Flag and Coat of Arms by which it would be identified universally.
A committee which had been appointed by Government to advise on the design of the Flag and the Coat of Arms of the new Nation, to choose a Motto for it, and to consider suggestions from the public on these matters, submitted its report on June 26. Cabinet immediately approved the report, and a picture of the National Flag was published.
The national flag was designed by the Independence Committee and selected to be used as the National Flag in 1962. Its colours are red, white and black.
Red is the colour most expressive of our country. It represents the vitality of the land and its people; it is the warmth and energy of the sun, the courage and friendliness of the people.
White is the sea by which these lands are bound: the cradle of our heritage; the purity of our aspirations and the equality of all men under the sun.
The Black represents for us the dedication of the people joined together by one strong bond. It is the colour of strength, of unity, of purpose and of the wealth of the land. The colours chosen represent the elements Earth, Water and Fire which encompass all our past, present and future and inspire us as one united, vital, free and dedicated people.
The official description of the Flag reads as follows:
“On a Red Field, a Bend Dexter Sable bordered Silver; that is to say, there is on the Red Field a diagonal from left to right in Black bordered with White. The width of the Black and White bands joined side by side at the upper dexter corner of the Flag is one-fifth of the full length of the Flag and the width of each White band is one sixth of the width of the White and Black bands together. The width of the Black is therefore four-sixths of the total width of the White and Black”.
The Black and White diagonals must always point to the peak of the staff.
Source: Trinidad & Tobago. Ministry of Home Affairs. Our Flag and Other National Emblems. Trinidad: Government of Trinidad and Tobago, 1962. Print.