Irish Language Plan for Galway City

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Galway City Council and Gaillimh le Gaeilge have announced that Dr John Walsh, Roinn na Gaeilge and Dr Dorothy Ní Uigín, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, National University of Ireland Galway will lead a team of experts in language planning over the next few months to prepare a seven year Irish Language Plan for Galway City 2019-2026.

The objective of the Irish Language Plan, in line with Government policy, is to increase on an incremental basis, the communicative use and knowledge of Irish in Galway city as a community language. A new steering Group, Coiste Stiúrtha Pleanála Teanga Gaillimh (CSPT Gaillimh), was jointly established by Gaillimh le Gaeilge and Galway City Council to support, guide and oversee the progress and the delivery of an Irish Language Plan for the city. Members of the Coiste represent a broad cross-section of the public, private, community and voluntary sectors in Galway city.

Speaking on the Irish Language Plan, Galway City Council Chief Executive, Brendan McGrath says: “Galway City Council is very pleased to be involved with this initiative for Galway city. It will provide an effective structure and a resource base for sustainable Irish language planning in Galway city for the period 2019-2026 and beyond.”

Cathaoirleach Ghaillimh le Gaeilge, Bernadette Mullarkey says:

“This is an exciting time ahead not only for the Irish language but also for Galway City. As members of CSPT Gaillimh, we look forward to working closely with Dr John Walsh and Dr Dorothy Ní Uigín as we engage with the people of Galway to set out a range of practical, cost-effective, achievable initiatives with a specified timeframe in the plan. The clear objective of the plan will be to further promote, support and increase the communicative use of the Irish language as a norm in everyday life as well as delivering on Galway’s status as Ireland’s Bilingual City.”

Speaking about the work ahead, Dr John Walsh says:

“Over the next few months, we look forward to working with Coiste Stiúrtha Pleanála Teanga Gaillimh, to ensure that we deliver a successful language plan for the city. The planning project will comprise two phases; firstly a review of existing relevant research and international best practice and secondly a consultation exercise with relevant stakeholders and interested parties. We also hope to gain a better understanding of the needs and desires of the Irish language networks already operating in the city.”

Dr John Walsh is a Senior Lecturer in Irish at the School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures, specialising in sociolinguistics. Dr Dorothy Ní Uigín, is Acting CEO of Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, at the National University of Ireland, Galway. She is interested in language teaching and acquisition.