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Tag Archives: Irish

MacDara’s vision for bi-lingual Ennis inside 10 years

MACDARA Ó Conaola is a man with a vision. Recently appointed  Language Planning Officer for Ennis he believes the county capital has the potential to become a bilingual town within the next decade. He feels Ennis and Clare has the capacity to become a “beacon” to the rest of the country in changing how people view Irish, a language which, he laments, is currently “hanging by a thread”. Speaking to The Clare Champion recently MacDara talks about, amongst other topics, his work in Ennis, infectious passion for the Irish language, involvement with the hit movie The Banshees of Inisherin and love of music. Growing up on Inis Oírr completely bilingually MacDara says he was “very fortunate” in his upbringing. However he acknowledges, that for others, there can be a “negative attitude” towards Irish. This is something he wants to counteract, urging people to embrace the language in whatever little way they can and encouraging younger generations to engage. He tells …

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Clare family counting cost of pursuing education through Irish

A MILTOWN mum-of-six is facing a bill of €200 per month so that her children can avail of their entitlement to be educated through the medium of Irish.  Erica Burke has been making intensive efforts, over the last 18 months, to secure school bus transport from the family home in Miltown to Gaelcholáiste an Chláir in Ennis, the county’s sole provider of secondary education through Irish.  The school is highly supportive of the family and has made every effort to accommodate the two children attending. Due to the schedule of public transport, the children, who are in first and second year, are unavoidably late, by at least half an hour every day. That has resulted in them losing out on what Principal Brian O’Donoghue estimates is four full school days to-date, through no fault of their own or their family. Mr O’Donoghue noted that the Gaelcholáiste is the county provider of secondary school education through Irish and “absolutely thrilled” to …

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‘There’s healing in the language,’ says Clare’s Irish Language Officer

“WHEN it comes to learning Irish, everyone has a story,” according Michael McCaughan, Clare County Council’s first Irish Language Officer in six years. “It might be a generational thing, but people very often have baggage that needs to be unpacked. There are bad experiences someone might need to move beyond, not to mention the fact that after spending 14 years learning it in a classroom, we can hardly order a cup of coffee through Irish.” As someone who is not a native speaker himself, Michael is uniquely positioned to understand the hurdles many face when it comes to using more Gaeilge, as well as the multitude of ways that people can enjoy and appreciate the language. His own story of “coming home” to Irish and choosing to live his life through that medium is likely to inspire many. Michael left school with a fluency in French and Spanish, before “a kind of mixture of punk rock and a sense of …

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Irish Car of the Year 2017

It’s getting towards the end of the year again and in the motor industry, that means it’s time again for the Irish Car of the Year and Irish Van of the Year awards. This is the 40th year of the awards, which are again supported by long time sponsor, Continental Tyres. The overall winning car and the category winners will be announced at a black-tie ceremony at the Powerscourt Hotel, Enniskerry, on October 27. This year, 33 of Ireland’s leading motoring writers will get together to vote for what they believe to be the best on the market. For the first time, the field of contenders has been expanded to encompass facelifted cars too, so any car introduced in the last year is in with a shout. Voting jurors, who have spent the last twelve months familiarising themselves with everything on the market, will vote in a number of categories. Each juror has 25 points to allocate in each category, …

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The Ford Mondeo is the Continental Irish Car of the Year 2016

Ford Mondeo is Continental Irish Car of the Year 2016

The Ford Mondeo has been voted Continental Irish Car of the Year 2016 by the Irish Motoring Writers’ Association. The announcement of the 39th Irish Car of the Year Award was made at an awards ceremony in Dublin today. The winning car was revealed by Rosemary Smith, to mark the 50th anniversary of her victory in the Tulip Rally in April 1965. She is the only woman to have won the rally. The overall results, with weighted scores, were as follows: 1. Ford Mondeo 148 points 2. Volvo XC90 147 points 3. Mercedes Benz GLE 144 points 4. Kia Sorento 144 points 5. Skoda Superb 140 points The Irish Motoring Writers’ Association judges awarded points on the basis of criteria ranging from design, comfort, safety, economy, handling and performance as well as driver satisfaction, value for money and technical innovation, with a maximum of 20 points under each heading. John Galvin, Chairman of the Irish Motoring Writers’ Association, commented: “The …

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Helping to reawaken Irish America

By CAROL BYRNE CATHAL Goan, former head of RTE, will launch Irish America Reawakening: The Eoin McKiernan Story a book at Foras na Gaeilge in Dublin on Wednesday next. Eoin McKiernan was the son of Clare emigrant Delia Nagle from Lahinch, and founded the Irish American Cultural institute (IACI), which poured millions of dollars into the Irish economy over the latter part of the 20th century. His daughter, Deirdre McKiernan Hetzler has chronicled his life and achievements in a new book entitled Irish America Reawakening: The Eoin McKiernan Story, currently available in Ennis. Eoin’s mother was from Tullygarvin in Lahinch but he was born in New York City, and studied at the Irish Cumman na Gaeilge in New York and won a scholarship to study at Rosmuc. Eoin was a fluent Irish speaker and worked passionately for the language revival. He was on the faculty at the State University of New York and the president of what would become the …

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Dialects archive goes online

VOICES of native Irish speakers from North Clare in the 1930s are being brought back to life by the Royal Irish Academy. Eighty-five years ago, a German professor, Dr Wilhelm Doegen, came to Ireland at the request of the new Irish Ministry of Education to record Irish-language speakers throughout the island. The objective was to have a permanent record of the spoken language from all of the districts in which it was still spoken. Clare men Stiofán Ó hEilíre, Máirtín Mag Fhloinn, Seán Carún, James Shannon and Liam Ó Dileáin took part in the project and were recorded at the then University College Galway between September 8 and 21, 1930. While the recordings have long been known to linguists, the Academy Library wanted to make them freely available to all via the internet and Minister for Education and Skills Ruairí Quinn recently officially launched The Doegen Records Web Project: Irish Dialect Sound Recordings 1928-1931. Recordings of stories, songs, poems and …

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