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Public Meeting on Clare Gaeltacht revival

Public Meeting on Clare Gaeltacht revival

Reviving the long-forgotten Clare Gaeltacht and obtaining official Gaeltacht status for the county will be the focus of a public meeting to be held in the Golf Club in Kilrush on Friday February 3rd at 8pm.

A local committee, Coiste Forbartha na Gaeltachta Contae an Chláir is organising the meeting, and its chairman Seósamh Mac Ionnrachtaigh believes that there is a demand for Gaeltacht status, particularly amongst the known 170 people who speak the language on a daily basis in the western part of county Clare.

Parts of the county were recognised Gaeltacht areas back in the 1920’s with Irish speakers living  west of Ennis in Doonbeg,  Ennistimon, Carrigahold and Lisdoonvarna.

Native speakers who received grants under the Scéim Labhairt na Gaeilge, a scheme first established by the State in 1933 with the aim of  supporting Gaeltacht families and language promotion in Gaeltacht regions, still live in the county and speak the language on daily basis.

Local  TD Pat Breen is set to attend the event along with Irish language enthusiasts, members of local Irish language committees and Conradh na Gaeilge branches in the county.

Seósamh believes that there may be an opportunity to build on the demand for Gaeltacht status under the Government’s 20 Year Strategy for the Irish language which has provisions for the creation of new Gaeltacht networks.

These networks would be established in areas outside of recognised Gaeltacht regions but the Department of Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht has yet to announce details of these planned networks.

It’s a long road ahead, he says, but the committee aims to introduce and develop networks amongst Irish speakers in the interim before finalising detailed plans and developing the future Gaeltacht network for the county by 2016.

©Foilsithe ar 27 Eanáir 2012.

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