Royal Canadian Air Force Colours

In military terms, the word “Colours” usually refers to consecrated ceremonial flags carried by certain Canadian Armed Forces combatant formations and units.

These unique flags are a unit's most prized possession. They are presented personally by the Sovereign or by an individual acting on behalf of the Sovereign – usually the Governor General.

Historically, Colours marked and provided a rallying point for army regiments in the line of battle. Today, they are no longer carried in action but they continue to be visible symbols of pride, honour and devotion to Sovereign and country.

On September 1, 2017, the Royal Canadian Air Force received its third “stand” of Colours from His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada, at Nathan Phillips Square in Toronto. The stand consists of two Colours. The Queen’s Colour, a Canadian maple leaf flag with the Sovereign’s cypher in the centre, symbolizes loyalty to the Crown. The Command Colour, a blue flag with the RCAF’s badge at the centre, symbolizes the RCAF’s pride, cohesion and valour.

This once-in-a-generation event was marked by a parade, the presentation and consecration of the new Colours, and flypasts of historical and current RCAF aircraft.

Read more about the history and meaning of military Colours.

The Royal Canadian Air Force’s new Queen’s Colour carries the historic name of the RCAF, which was restored in 2011. IMAGE: Artist’s concept of the proposed Colour
The Royal Canadian Air Force’s new Command Colour carries the new badge of the RCAF, which was created following the restoration of the RCAF’s historic name in 2011. As well, the tops of the maple leaves at the four corners now point outward, as they did on the first RCAF Command Colour, presented in 1950. IMAGE: Artist’s concept of the proposed Colour.

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