Team GB slammed for ‘defacing’ Union flag by turning it pink and purple for Paris Olympics

Team GB flag - Team GB slammed for 'defacing' Union flag for Paris Olympics

The £12 supporters’ flag has replaced the traditional red, white and blue design with a new colour scheme

Team GB have been slammed for ‘defacing’ the Union flag after turning the flag pink and purple ahead of the Paris Olympics this summer.

The alteration features on the Supporter’s flag which is being sold for £12 on Team GB’s website, with it also featuring on bunting and hand waver flags.

It comes after Nike came under fire from fans for changing parts of the St George’s Cross on the back of England’s new home kit to purple and president of the National Flag Institute Malcolm Farrow accused Team GB of ‘defacing’ the national symbol of unity.

Team GB flag – Team GB slammed for 'defacing' Union Jack by turning it pink and purple for Paris OlympicsTeam GB flag – Team GB slammed for 'defacing' Union Jack by turning it pink and purple for Paris Olympics

Team GB’s rebrand of the Union flag colours has been met with backlash from sports fans

“I don’t approve of our national symbol of unity being defaced,” he told The Sun.

“People have every right to be upset with Team GB. They need to remember brave men fought for this flag and died while protecting it. Changing it is bordering on an insult to them. To do something like this in places like India, Greece or Turkey would have serious consequences.”

He added “Designs to commemorate special events like previous Olympics have put an approved badge in the centre and kept the flag the same. This is just a marketing gimmick.”

The flag change comes after the British Olympic Association – the committee behind Team GB – employed design company ‘Thisaway’ to target appealing to a younger audience by increasing interest in athletics outside of the Olympics.

“As with many sport brands, colour was a point of contention,” This away wrote on their website in regards to the Supporters Flag. “Obviously red, white and blue is synonymous with Great Britain, but it’s far from unique, with nations such as France and USA also sporting the same colours. We needed to find a way of refreshing Team GB’s colour palette in a way that is both flexible and ownable.”

“Rather than trying to look beyond the traditional colours, we decided to embrace them and push the iconic red, white and blue as far as we could.” Red was previously take out of designs on Team GB’s London 2012 kit before it was restored in Rio 2016 and Tokyo four years ago.

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