Since 2006 Doug Ford and his team from the Maritime Museum Boat shop have been responsible for the operation of the Fort Regent Signal Station.
Military signals were being flown from the site on Mont de la Ville throughout the 18th century and commercial signals were introduced in the 19th century. Severe weather warnings have been hoisted here since since 1861.
When the two States Departments responsible for operating the Signal Station decided that due to budgetry constraints they would cease in 2004/05 there was a public outcry. Despite the advent of modern techologies replacing some of its functions there was a feeling that this three centuries old tradition should be carried on; and so, Jersey Heritage set about organising a new approach to operating the signal mast as part of its public programme.
While most of this new programme can be fixed in advance (the flags), hoisting the weather warnings still means someone has to be on call between sunrise and sunset 365 days a year .
Flags at the mast head
In general the Jersey flag is flown from the mast head and the mast is dressed overall on the designated Official Flag Dates to mark Royal Occasions and on Liberation Day - May 9th.
On certain days messages are spelled out in flags to mark certain days:
June 25th (the commemorative ceremony on the Albert Quay is on Sunday 24 June, 2012) - YZ HOME AGAIN to mark the Evacuees and the return of the first mailboat after the Occupation.
November 11th - YZ PEACE to mark Armistice Day
The week before Christmas Day until January 6th - YZ SEASONS GREETINGS to celebrate Christmas.
The Union Flag is flown from the mast head in late June to mark Armed Forces Day (30 June in 2012) and again on 21 October to commemorate Trafalgar Day.
The Red Ensign is flown from the mast head to mark Merchant Navy Day on 3rd September.
Flags on the yard
The Pilot Jack is flown whenever a tall ship is in port.
The White Ensign is flown whena Royal Navy Warship is in port.
A National flag is flown whenever another nation's visiting warship is in port.
The T flag is flown as a potential flood warning whenever high tide is over 11½ metres (just under 38ft).
Strong Wind Warnings
The cone and ball are hoisted whenever the Jersey Meteorological Office issues a strong wind warning (force 6 or 7) for the area bounded by latitude 50°N, the French coast between Cap de la Hague and Ile de Brehat and longitude 3°W.
The storm cone is hoisted when ever the forecast is for force 8 or above.
(not to be confused with the french flag)