EU flag marks birthday as voters hit polls

It was today in 1986 that the European Flag or Flag of Europe became the official symbol of two separate international organisations, the Council of Europe (CoE) and the European Union (EU).

Hardly known when introduced, it quickly became the recognisable logo of the block.

Although not official, it had been used for decades before becoming an official emblem. The circle of stars on a blue background is flown on government buildings across the continent.

The flag was designed in 1955, and officially launched later that year by the Council of Europe as a symbol for the whole of Europe.