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Australian National Flag Day- 3 September 2005

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Press Release Ref: 1582 Published: 26/8/2005

Title: Australian National Flag Day - 3 September 2005

Federal Member for Eden-Monaro, Gary Nairn has called on residents to celebrate Australian National Flag Day and to appreciate and understand our pre-eminent national symbol- the Australian Flag.

“Australian National Flag Day commemorates the day on which the flag which was to become today’s Australian National Fag was first flown - 3 September 1901,“ Mr Nairn said.

The National Flag expresses our identity as Australians whether on the sporting field, at times of remembrance and commemoration, on special days such as Australia Day or simply when we fly or display it at our homes. For this reason it is connected with many of the most important moments in our history, yet it has its own special story to tell - including how it design was chosen and what it means.

Facts about the Australian Flag:

• The design for our flag was chosen from a competition announced by then Prime Minster Edmund Barton in April 1901. The competition attracted 32,823 entries received from all over the world. Five almost identical designs were chosen as the winners and they were announced by the Prime Minster on 3 September 1901.

• On this day, 3 September 1901, the flag that was to become the Australian National Fag flew for the first time. It was not until several decades later with the Flags Act 1953 that the status of the flag was confirmed by law.

• Our flag is rich in symbolism. For instance the large star on the flag underneath the Union Jack is called the Commonwealth Star. Six of the points on the star represent each of the

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States of Australia and the seventh point represents our territories. The stars of the Southern Cross on the flag are a constellation that can only be seen in the night skies of the Southern Hemisphere.

There is so much to know about our flag. Australian National Flag Day is an opportunity to find out more about the flag and appreciate its history and significance as a symbol of our nation - further facts about the Australian National Flag can be obtained from the Office of Gary Nairn, phone 1300 301 983.