Manx Language Renaissance

The Manx Language continues to prosper and experience a growing revival. As reported in the on-line BBC News Magazine on 31st January 2013. There is an increased use in the numbers speaking Manx Gaelic, which is closely linked to Irish and Scottish Gaelic. This remarkable growth is also reflected in the road signage, mobile phone apps, broadcasts on Manx Radio and novels. The language declined significantly from the mid-nineteenth century when economic depression resulted in emigration. Many parents thought that just encouraging their children to speak English would help their job chances abroad. This was combined with the prevention of speaking the native tongue in schools at that time.

From The Celtic League - 2012 New Year Review

The Celtic League is an inter Celtic organization that has campaigned for the political, language, cultural and social rights of the Celtic Nations since 1961. The League have posted an article to its January 2013 "Latest News" feature section on the Leagues' website entitled "2012 – New Year Review". This article surveys developments during 2012 that impact the preservation, protection and promotion of Celtic culture in the Six Nations. Below are the highlights of the “2012 – New Year Review”.  The complete text can be found on the Celtic Leagues’ website linked below.

Manx Government tackles Ash Dieback Disease

Ash Dieback Disease (Cholera fraxinus) has been caused major problems in the west of continental Europe where it has killed something like 90% of the trees infected. Unfortunately, it has spread to parts of the United Kingdom and Eire and increasing numbers of trees have been infected.  It is spread by the wind via fungal spores. The spores can travel up to something like 30-40km from area to area. Its spread to Eire and UK seems to have resulted from human spread of trees and plant material.

Scottish Government boost Gaelic School

Scottish Gaelic received a boost when £3 million pounds additional funding was awarded to Sabhal Mòr Ostaig from the Scottish Government. The Sabhal Mòr Ostaig  college on the Isle of Skye is noted for excellence and is celebrating its fortieth anniversary in 2013. This money will be put towards expanding its campus and is part of £205 million pounds in infrastructure development for the college announced by John Swinney, Finance Secretary and Scottish National Party Member of the Scottish Parliament.

Fall in Welsh speakers is "Crisis"

In the news recently were the results of the 2011 Welsh census, which indicate an unexpected drop in the number of Welsh speakers.  It is reported that the 2001 census registerd 20.5% as Welsh Speaking whereas the 2011 census reported a drop to 19 %. 

The Celtic Languages are at a crossroads in Canada

Statements by Jason Kenney, the Canadian Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, have created a political storm which in turn has provoked a rebuke from the Nova Scotia Assembly.  Several days ago Jason Kenney dismissed what he claimed were "heritage" languages like Scottish and in particular the public funding of these tongues, advocating instead an emphasis on the learning and adoption of English and French. As reported in Canada's The Chronicle Herald: "Nova Scotia in particular now has the Oifis Iomairtean na Gàidhlig (Office of Gaelic Affairs) and the increasingly important Colaisde na Gàidhlig or Gaelic College at Baile Anna (St. Anne's), which links toScotland’s Sabhal Mòr Ostaig". In what must be regarded as a direct rebuke to Kenney, the following Motion was carried unanimously in the Nova Scotia House of Assembly, which is the oldest Assembly in Canada dating from 1758: 

British Parliamentarians Learning Cornish

British Members of Parliament (MPs) are signing up for Cornish lessons according to this article in Cornwall's Western Morning News. It is further being reported that those taking classes include three MPs with Cornish constituencies, plus one Scottish Nationalist and a member of Plaid Cymru. 

Global Irish Homecoming Year 2013 - The Gathering

The homecoming year, known as 'The Gathering' is an invitation to those of Irish descent throughout the world to visit the land of their ancestors. After some years of economic strife the 2013 'Gathering' is seen as an opportunity for renewal in Ireland. The event is aimed at being a nationwide time of fun and celebration as well as giving a much needed boost to the economy by the millions in revenue and employment generated.

Cornish flag flies proudly on Isle of Man

Cornish and Manx flags

One of the major features of Laxey on the Isle of Man is the Laxey Wheel, which is also known as Lady Isabella. It is the largest working water wheel in the world, with a circumference of 210ft 6ins, diameter 74ft 6ins and a width of 6ft. Built in 1854 it was used to pump water out of part of the Laxey lead, zinc, copper and silver mines.

Dublin, Ireland - journey from Douglas, Isle of Man

Follow's Alastair Kneale as he travels from Douglas, Isle of Man, to Dublin, Ireland, and back. 

Watch a slideshow of the trip


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