Historical information

This flag was used by Esperance Girls School, a private school based in Brighton from 1894-1956.

Esperance was established in 1894 at 6 Normanby Street by Misses Emsie, Marion, Gussie and Daisy Beaver. The four sisters came from a formerly-prosperous land-owning family that had suffered badly as a result of the depression of the early 1890s. At a time when few occupations were open to gentlewomen, running a school provided the sisters with a respectable means of supporting themselves. Notable teachers at Esperance during the 1890s included elocution mistress Miss Jeannie Taylor, who would later become better known as the author Mrs Aeneas Gunn.

In 1924 the school was sold to Miss Marian Taylor and Miss Chrissie McMillan, who had previously served as joint principals of Alexandra College in Hamilton between 1909 and 1913. Both women had strong family connections to Brighton: Marian was the granddaughter of early pioneer Archibald McMillan and Chrissie was a cousin of long-serving town clerk J. H. Taylor.

The new principals relocated the school to a large two-storey house on the corner of Park Street and Esperance Avenue, where it remained until its closure. They operated the school until 1950, when they sold it to a Miss Bury, who in turn sold it to the local Baptist Church in 1956. Following this final sale, the school continued for another four terms before closing.

Physical description

Navy blue flag, both sides featuring a large yellow-gold crest in centre, containing image of an anchor and surrounded by semicircular scroll with the motto "SPES ANCORA ANIMAE". Background features horizontal green stripe across centre, containing smaller red stripe and bordered on each side by yellow stripes.