Stephen Flynn at Prime Ministers Questions

Claim Stephen Flynn held poppy wreath upside down is False

Remembrance Sunday fell last weekend, and events were held across the UK marking the end of the First World War and honouring those who died while serving in Britain’s armed forces. 

Politicians across different parties gathered for a ceremony at the Cenotaph in London, including the SNP’s Westminster leader, Stephen Flynn

The Aberdeen South MP was later criticised on social media for failing to sing God Save the King, and claims were made that he showed disrespect by holding a ceremonial poppy wreath upside down. 

Stephen Flynn, the Westminster leader of the SNP, held his wreath upside down. 

Social media claims

Ferret Fact Service looked at this claim and found it False.


Party leaders at Westminster gather alongside prime ministers and other high-profile figures every year for the remembrance event at the Cenotaph in London. 

Flynn was joined by Labour leader, Keir Starmer, Liberal Democrat leader, Ed Davey, and London mayor, Sadiq Khan, as well as by prime minister, Rishi Sunak, and former prime ministers. 

Pictures showed the politicians standing holding poppy wreaths which were to be laid at the Cenotaph during the ceremony. 

Posts on social media claimed Flynn’s wreath was upside down, seemingly because the written dedication was on the bottom rather than the top, as seen in pictures taken by a Press Association photographer. 

This is not correct. Wreaths presented by Scottish politicians, including Flynn, are made by Lady Haig’s poppy factory in Edinburgh. This style of wreath has the dedication at the bottom rather than the top as shown here. The factory has been producing wreaths since 1926. 

Pictures from previous years show former Westminster leader Ian Blackford with a similar style of wreath, with its note at the bottom.

Ferret Fact Service verdict: False

Stephen Flynn’s poppy wreath was not upside down during the remembrance ceremony at the Cenotaph in London. His wreath was made in a different style to the other party leaders, and was produced by a long-standing Edinburgh poppy factory. 

This claim is false

Ferret Fact Service (FFS) is a non-partisan fact checker, and signatory to the International Fact-Checking Network fact-checkers’ code of principles.

All the sources used in our checks are publicly available and the FFS fact-checking methodology can be viewed here.

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Photo credit: UK Parliament, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

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