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Gaelic Links Archive 2006

28 November 06
Ainmean └ite na h-Alba -
Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland (A└A) Map the Way
The Ainmean └ite na h-Alba - Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland was formally launched on Tuesday evening (28 November) at an event held in the Garden Lobby of the Scottish Parliament.

Set against the Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005, which gives public bodies new opportunities and responsibilities to promote the use of the language, it became evident that local authorities and organisations across Scotland responsible for mapping required guidance on Gaelic names.

The Ainmean └ite na h-Alba - Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland (A└A) is a partnership of public and voluntary bodies. Its purpose is to:

  • determine authoritative forms of Gaelic place-names across Scotland

  •  apply consistent orthography of Gaelic in place-names

  • to encourage the adoption of these forms of Gaelic place-names

The Partnership includes Argyll and Bute Council, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, Comunn na GÓidhlig, CL╠ GÓidhlig, Highland Council, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Ordnance Survey, Scottish Place-Names Society and the UHI Millennium Institute.

The partnership uses local knowledge, historical expertise and established principles to agree accurate forms of place-names.

Ainmean └ite na h-Alba - Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland produces guidance for trunk road and local authorities on standard Gaelic versions of road signs and street names to ensure consistent standards. A longer term intention is to establish an on-line resource, accessible to all, as a reference resource for place-names in Gaelic.

Mr John Hutchison, Chairman of Ainmean └ite na h-Alba - Gaelic Place-Names said: "I'm delighted that we are now embarking on a new development phase as a formally constituted organisation. The partnership is working effectively, and I'm happy to announce that we have a number of developments planned leading up to the production of a national Gaelic gazetteer.

"A└A warmly welcomes the financial support it has received from, Argyll and Bute Council, Bord na GÓidhlig, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, Highland Council, also the financial support which we received from Highlands and Islands Enterprise as this assisted us to develop our business plan.

"It gives me great pleasure to formally launch the website www.gaelicplacenames.org and information leaflet at the Scottish Parliament so close to our national day, St Andrews day. I hope that you will visit the A└A website regularly and make use of the services offered, as it will be an invaluable educational tool and a treasure trove for Scotland's historical, environmental and linguistic heritage."

Mr Hugh Buchanan Ordnance Survey External Relations Manager said, "Ordnance Survey are delighted to welcome the establishment of Ainmean-└ite na h-Alba Gaelic Place Names of Scotland as an authoritative forum for agreeing the modern use of Gaelic in place names. We are proud of our role in preserving the record of Gaelic in place names - one of the most visible uses of the language for many visitors to Scotland. We look forward to working with A└A to continue this work, as we have done previously with the Gaelic Names Liaison Committee."

Ainmean └ite na h-Alba -
Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland (A└A)
Chaidh Ainmean └ite na h-Alba - Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland (A└A) a chur air bhog gu h-oifigeil feasgar DimÓirt (28 Samhain) ann an Lobaidh a' GhÓrraidh ann am PÓrlamaid na h-Alba.

Le bhith ga chur fa chomhair Achd na GÓidhlig (Alba) 2005, a tha a' toirt chothroman ¨ra agus a' cur dleastanas air buidhnean gus a bhith a' brosnachadh a' chÓnain, bha e follaiseach gun robh sti¨ireadh a thaobh ainmean GÓidhlig a dhýth air ¨ghdarrasan ionadail is buidhnean air feadh Alba le uallach airson mapadh.

'S e caidreachas de bhuidhnean poblach is saor-thoileach a th' ann an Ainmean └ite na h-Alba - Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland (A└A). 'S e an t-amas aca:

  • cruthan ¨ghdarrasail nan ainmean Óite air feadh Alba a sh˛nrachadh

  • modh litreachaidh co-chothromach a chur an sÓs airson ainmean Óite GÓidhlig

  • brosnachadh a dhŔanamh air gabhail ri na cruthan seo air ainmean Óite GÓidhlig

Tha an Caidreachas a' gabhail a-steach Comhairle Earra-GhÓidheil is Bh˛id, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, Comunn na GÓidhlig, CL╠ GÓidhlig, Comhairle na GÓidhealtachd, Iomairt na GÓidhealtachd is nan Eilean, Tomhas an Riaghaltais, Comann Ainmean └ite na h-Alba agus Institi¨d Mýle Bliadhna UHI.

Tha an caidreachas a' cleachdadh fiosrachadh ionadail, e˛las eachdraidheil agus prionnsabalan stŔidhichte gus aontachadh air cruthan cearta nan ainmean Óite.

Tha Ainmean └ite na h-Alba - Gaelic Place-Names of Scotland a' foillseachadh sti¨ireadh airson phrýomh r˛idean agus ¨ghdarrasan ionadail air dreachd coitcheann shoighnichean rathaid is ainmean shrÓidean gus a bhith cinnteach gu bheil co-chothromachadh ann. 'S e an t-amas sa cheann fhada st˛ras a chruthachadh air-loidhne a bhios na ghoireas fiosrachaidh airson ainmean GÓidhlig agus air am bi cothrom aig a h-uile duine.

Thuirt Mgr Iain Hutchison, Cathraiche Ainmean └ite na h-Alba - Gaelic Place-Names: "Tha mi uabhasach toilichte gu bheil sinn a-nis a' t˛iseachadh air ýre leasachaidh ¨r mar bhuidheann a tha stŔidhte gu h-oifigeil. Tha an caidreachas ag obrachadh gu math agus tha mi toilichte a rÓdh gu bheil corra leasachadh san amharc againn a bheir sinn a dh'ionnsaigh clÓr-Óitean nÓiseanta GÓidhlig.

"Tha A└A a' cur fÓilte air an taic airgid a fhuaradh bho Chomhairle Earra-GhÓidheil is Bh˛id, B˛rd na GÓidhlig, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar is Comhairle na GÓidhealtachd agus, cuideachd, an taic airgid a fhuaradh bho Iomairt na GÓidhealtachd is nan Eilean oir chuidich seo sinn le bhith a' leasachadh a' phlana gnýomhachais againn.


9 November 06
Gaelic Medium Secondary education moves to Inverness Royal Academy
Members of The Highland Council's Education, Culture and Sport Committee have agreed to transfer Gaelic Medium secondary education provision from Millburn Academy to Inverness Royal Academy in Inverness. The decision to move the provision of Gaelic Medium education was made following hearing the outcome of a statutory consultation with parents, school boards, community councils, Members of Parliament and Scottish Parliament, Head Teachers and staff of the schools directly affected, and the Chairman of Comann nam Parant. The transfer of Gaelic Medium education will commence with pupils entering their first year at secondary school from August 2007. This timing of the transfer to Inverness Royal Academy will coincide with the opening of the new Gaelic Primary School, Bunsgoil Ghaidhlig Inbhir Nis.
Pupils at Millburn Academy who have already started Gaelic Medium education prior to August 2007 will continue to receive their schooling at Millburn Academy until they complete their secondary education.

"Tha e a' toirt toileachas m˛r dhomh a bhith a' cur na lÓraich-lýn www.gaelicplacenames.org agus a' bhileag fiosrachaidh, air bhog gu h-oifigeil aig PÓrlamaid na h-Alba cho faisg air an latha nÓiseanta againn, Latha an Naoimh Anndra. Tha min d˛chas gun tadhail sibh tric air lÓrach-lýn A└A agus gun dŔan sibh feum dhe na seirbheisean a thathar a' tairgsinn. Bidh e na fhýor ghoireas foghlaim agus glŔ luachmhor do dhualchas na h-Alba a thaobh eachdraidh, Órainneachd agus cÓnan."

Thuirt Mgr ┘isdean Bochanan, an Sti¨iriche DÓimh aig Tomhas an Riaghaltais. "Tha Tomhas an Riaghaltais air leth toilichte gu bheil Ainmean-└ite na h-Alba Gaelic Place Names of Scotland ga stŔidheachadh mar fh˛ram ¨ghdarrasail airson a bhith ag aontachadh air cleachdadh na GÓidhlig ann an ainmean Óite san latha an-diugh. Tha sinn moiteil gu bheil Óite againn ann a bhith a' gleidheadh na GÓidhlig ann an ainmean Óite - suidheachadh cho follaiseach 's a th' ann do luchd-turais ann an Alba a bhith a' faicinn a' chÓnain ga chur gu feum. Bidh sinn toilichte a bhith a' leantainn leis an obair seo c˛mhla ri A└A, mar a rinn sinn roimhe c˛mhla ri Comataidh Ceangail nan Ainmean GÓidhlig."

The Mod

The 2006 Dunoon Mod Results

20 October 06
Highland 2007 Mod in Lochaber

Lochaber will play host to The Royal National Mod next year as part of the Highland 2007 celebrations and organisers are promising an extra special event with opportunity to highlight and strengthen the forged links the area has with Cape Breton in Nova Scotia.

In October 2002 The Highland Council signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Provincial Government of Nova Scotia to develop strong cultural and linguistic ties between the Highlands, Nova Scotia and Cape Breton. These links focus on cultural development, education, and tourism and they encourage exchanges of information joint ventures within these three areas.

Since the signing, a number of high profile exchanges and ventures have involved both public and private sector interests, as well as volunteer and community-based organisations and institutions.

Vice Convener of The Highland Council and Lochaber Councillor, Dr Michael Foxley said: "The Highland Council is delighted to host the Mod in 2007 which will be a very memorable occasion. From my first visit to Nova Scotia I recognised the unique and powerful connection that exists between the Gaelic speaking areas of Lochaber and Nova Scotia on the basis of a common language, a common culture, family ties and emigration. I am delighted that the Mod next year will celebrate these connections and provide more exciting opportunities to share our traditions and cultures."

Mr Angus MacIssac, Minister Responsible for Gaelic Affairs for the Province of Nova Scotia said: "The hosting of the Royal National Mod in Lochaber in 2007 is of significant resonance to Nova Scotians. Many residents of mainland Nova Scotia and Cape Breton Island trace their ancestry back to the Lochaber area. In 2007, the Year of Highland Culture in Scotland, the mod will welcome Nova Scotians to participate in scheduled events that celebrate the common ties that bind our two regions - shared language, culture and kinship. An important focus of Nova Scotia's Office of Gaelic Affairs will be to foster these ties and seek out future development opportunities to participate in this signature Scottish event. Meallaibh ur naidheachd, O Lochabair is h-uile duine aig a' Mhod. Gun soibhich leibh uile gu leir."

Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport, Patricia Ferguson said: "I am delighted that the Royal National Mod is returning to Lochaber in 2007, the year when Highland culture will be celebrated throughout Scotland.

"The mod is a suberb event which brings together people of all ages to rejoice in Gaelic song and music, and I would like to extend a warm welcome to those visitors joining us from Nova Scotia and elsewhere.

"It is encouraging to see so many people from across Scotland competing in Gaelic, and I hope the 2007 Mod will build on the success of previous years, in what promises to be a momentous year both for Highland culture and the Gaelic language."

The Chairman of The Highland Council's Education, Culture and Sport Committee, Andy Anderson said: "We are really looking forward to a special Mod in 2007 especially as it will tie in with the remit of the Natiional Plan for Gaelic which we warmly welcome. The Highland Council was the first local authority to produce a Gaelic Language Plan in the spirit of the Gaelic Language Act and we look forward to working with An Comunn Gßidhealach to make this a memorable Highland 2007 Mod."

19 October 06
Iomairt na Gaidhealtachd a' cur fÓilte air Planaichean GÓidhlig B˛rd na GÓidhlig
Madainn an-diugh, dh'ainmich B˛rd na GÓidhlig Iomairt na Gaidhealtachd maraon de na ciad bhuidhnean poblach air a bhios uallach planaichean GÓidhlig ullachadh gus cumail ri Achd na GÓidhlig, a chaidh aontachadh bho chionn goirid.

Chuir Sandy Cumming, └rd-Oifigear Iomairt na GÓidhealtachd, fÓilte air an naidheachd, is e ag radh: "Tha sinn toilichte dha-rýreabh an naidheachd seo a chluinntinn, agus i ag innse m˛ran mu'n Óite cudthromach a bhios aig Iomairt na GÓidhealtachd ann a bhith cumail taic ri ath-nuadhachadh leantainneach a' chÓnain."

"Tha a' GhÓidhlig na buannachd air leth airson na h-Alba is tha i na pairt sh˛nraichte dhen an dualchas luachmhor a th'againn air a' GhÓidhealtachd is na h-Eileanan. Ged a tha sinn ag aithneachadh cho brisg agus a tha staid a' chÓnain, tha sinn a' toirt gealltanais gun tŔid plana cÓnain a tha dÓna is ¨r-ghnÓthaichte a chur air d˛igh airson Iomairt na GÓidhealtachd, a chuireas ris a' GhÓidhlig anns an Óm ri tighinn agus a dhearbhas gun soirbhich leatha is gun fÓs i mar chÓnan sa choimhearsnachd agus mar she˛l a bheireas leasachadh air an sgýre againn."

Bho chionn ghoirid, chaidh Alasdair MacLe˛id fhastadh le Iomairt na
GÓidhealtachd mar mhanaidsear poileasaidh na GÓidhlig agus uallach aige airson Plana GÓidhlig a leasachadh is a chur an gnýomh.

Thuirt Alasdair: "Tha mi a' coimhead air adhart ri bhith ag obair c˛mhla ri B˛rd na GÓidhlig, agus comhla ri co-oibrichean an Iomairt na GÓidhealtachd agus anns na companaidhean iomairt ionadail, gus Plana GÓidhlig a chur an gnýomh; Plana GÓidhlig a chuireas ri Plana NÓiseanta na GÓidhlig gus amasan a' Phlana a thoirt gu buil.

"Tha Iomairt na GÓidhealtachd, agus B˛rd Leasachaidh na GÓidhealtachd roimhe, air a bhith taiceil a thaobh na GÓidhlig agus tha sinn fhathast a' cumail taic ri leasachadh a' chÓnain agus a' chultar tro bhuidhnean mar Chomunn na GÓidhlig, Phr˛iseact nan Ealan agus FhŔisean nan GÓidheal. Feumaidh sinn a-nis barrachd leasachadh a dheanamh air Óite na GÓidhlig taobh a-staigh Iomairt na GÓidhealtachd agus doigh obrachaidh ¨r a chruthachadh gus aite tŔarainte is seasmhach a ghleidheadh airson an GÓidhlig.

A' bruidhinn gu pearsanta, thuirt Alasdair: "Is e Le˛dhasach a th'annamsa. Is ged a chaidh mo rugadh is mo thogail an Baile Ste˛rnabhaigh, chur mi seachad m˛ran ¨ine an Arnol air An Taobh Siar c˛mhla ri teaghlach aig a bheil a' GhÓidhlig mar chiad chÓnan aca, is feadhainn eile dhen teaghlach aig nach robh m˛ran a bharrachd ach facal no dhÓ de Bheurla. 'S e smaoin dhuilich dha-rýreabh a th' ann a bhi smaoinich air an sgire againn gun a' GhÓidhlig, cÓnan mo theaghlaich is cÓnan mo shinnsearan, air bilean an t-sluaigh. Tha mi lÓn d¨il mo dhýcheall a dhŔanamh gus ar cÓnan a chumail be˛ mar chÓnan choimhearsnachdan agus mar phÓirt de bheatha lÓthaireil muinntir na Gaidhealtachd is nan Eilean."

HIE 'fÓilte' to B˛rd na GÓidhlig announcement on Gaelic plans
BĎRD na GÓidhlig this morning announced that Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) will be one of the first public bodies invited to prepare a Gaelic language plan in compliance with the recently passed Gaelic Language Act.

HIE chief executive, Sandy Cumming, said: "We are delighted by this news. It indicates the particularly important role the HIE network will play in the continued regeneration of the language.

"Gaelic is a tremendously valuable asset to Scotland and helps shape the distinctive culture we enjoy in the Highlands and Islands. Whilst we recognise the fragile position of the language, we are committed to implementing a bold and innovative language plan for the HIE network that will make a genuine contribution to the future of Gaelic and ensure that it continues to flourish and grow as a spoken community language and as a driver for the further development of our region."

HIE recently appointed Alasdair MacLe˛id as Gaelic policy manager with responsibility for developing and implementing a Gaelic Plan for the Network.

Alasdair said: "I am very much looking forward to working alongside staff in B˛rd na GÓidhlig and with colleagues at HIE and throughout the local enterprise companies in implementing a Gaelic plan which will complement the National Plan for Gaelic and contribute to achieving its aims.

"The HIE network and HIDB before it have a history of support for Gaelic and continue to invest in taking forward development of the culture and language through bodies such as Comunn na GÓidhlig, Pr˛iseact nan Ealan and FŔisean nan GÓidheal. It is important now that we raise the profile of Gaelic in the HIE network and create an operational culture which will help ensure a secure and sustainable future for Gaelic in the region.

Alasdair spoke personally: "Having grown up in Lewis and having spent much of my time on the west-side of the island amongst family who speak Gaelic as their first language and with some who spoke Gaelic as their only language, it is a very sad and very sobering thought to imagine a time when Gaelic; the language of my family and my forebears is no longer spoken in our area. I am determined to play a part in ensuring our language thrives as a language of communities and as a part of the day to day lives of people living in the Highlands and Islands."

5 April 06

A delegation representing local agencies from the Highlands visited the Celtic Film and Television Festival in Falmouth, Cornwall. Festival last week to invite, and warmly welcome the Festival to Skye and Lochalsh next year, which is the Year that Highland Culture will be celebrated throughout Scotland.

Councillor Hamish Fraser, Chairman of The Highland Council's Gaelic Select Committee, said: "We are delighted that the Festival will be held in the Highlands in 2007 especially in Skye. There is good quality, accommodation and facilities in the area. It is fitting that the Festival should return to the area during 2007 as it was last held in Skye in 1999. The Highland Council sees the Festival as an opportunity to celebrate Highland culture and language through media.

"Next year there will be a Gaelic digital channel which will offer
tremendous opportunities for the whole industry, it is therefore very important that all the agencies work together to ensure that this 'new' industry develops and thrives. The Festival is part of that process.

"The Festival offers a good opportunity for people in the media industry to liaise, meet and recognise their achievements in production within an increasingly competitive market. The media is developing and entering a 'new' and interactive phase as communication is rapidly developing on the internet and digital broadcasting is taking its share of the global market."

Maggie Cunningham, Chairman of the Celtic Film and Television Festival, said: "We are looking forward to running the Festival in Skye. We know that it will attract participants from across all sectors and genres in the different Countries. We are looking forward to working with the local agencies and groups in the area to create an exciting, vibrant and enjoyable festival which reflects the area."

Robert Muir, Chief Executive of Skye and Lochalsh Enterprise, which is supporting the event, said: "It is clear from our visit that many of the delegates are very excited about coming to Skye next year. The Festival raises the profile of lesser used languages, contributes to the economy of the area, and is the perfect area and location to stimulate creativity, and inspiration for participants in the industry, as we have a strong arts base and the area is world renown for its beauty and the natural landscape.

"The independent sector offers opportunities for job creation not only in the cities but in rural communities especially with the development of broadband, the role out of high speed broadband and the development of digital channels."

12 January 06

A delegation from The Highland Council's Gaelic Select Committee will give evidence at a meeting of the Committee of Experts of the Regional and Minority Languages Charter.

The European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages was drawn up in 1992 by the Council of Europe to help promote Europe~s lesser used languages. The UK Government signed the Charter in 2000 and ratified it in 2001 in respect of Scottish Gaelic, Irish Gaelic in Northern Ireland and Welsh.

The Committee of Experts is responsible for carrying out monitoring. Its role is to examine the real situation of minority languages, to report to the Committee of Ministers on levels of compliance with the Charter, and, where appropriate, to encourage the Government to reach a higher level of commitment.

The Council representatives, along with representatives from other Scottish Local Authorities, will travel to Edinburgh for the meeting on Monday 30 January 2006.

Following the 2003 review of the UK's ~compliance with the Charter, the Committee made the following recommendations to the Governemnt in relation to Gaelic:

  • Make primary and secondary education in Gaelic generally available in areas where the language is used;
  • With regard to Gaelic, establish a system for monitoring the measures taken and progress achieved in regional or minority language education, including the production and publication of report findings;
  •  Provide information and guidance to those responsible for implementing the undertaking chosen for Gaelic, in particular in the fields of education and administration;
  • Facilitate the establishment of a television channel or an equivalent television service and overcome the shortcomings in Gaelic radio broadcasting.