A new period in the history of Foras na Gaeilge was marked as An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar TD opened Foras na Gaeilge’s new head office at 63-66 Amiens Street at a special event tonight. An Taoiseach toured the new offices which include new Raidió na Life studios and was very impressed by the facilities. Government Chief Whip and Minister of State at the Department of Culture with responsibility for Gaeilge, Gaeltacht and the Islands, Joe McHugh TD, accompanied An Taoiseach at the event.
Foras na Gaeilge Chief Executive Seán Ó Coinn said, “I am delighted that we have found a permanent home for our Dublin staff, who had been previously located in two separate offices, especially given the present high demand for office space in the capital. We have now found a long-term office space, close to the city centre and public transport hubs, which will be easily accessible for the public and staff alike. The offices are suitable for the nature of Foras na Gaeilge’s work, and have facilities the public can use. I hope that the city’s Irish language community can make this building their own as they did 7 Merrion Square, and we can therefore create a new history for the building in what is Bliain na Gaeilge 2018 … the beginning of a new era for the Irish language in the capital.”
Ó Coinn gave particular recognition to former Chief Executive Ferdie Mac an Fhailigh, who saw the need for and started the search for a new head office as far back as 2015, and to all, both staff members, board members and others, who had an input into the move to Amiens Street.
A mix of employees, former employees, current and former board members, ministers and departments of state, lead organisations and Irish language organisations as well as organisations based in the area attended the launch of the head office of the all-island organisation in Dublin 1. Gráinne McElwain, television producer and presenter and current board member of Foras na Gaeilge, lead the proceedings as bean an tí. Award winning Irish language band IMLÉ brought the event to a close with a special performance of the song Críochfort, which won Song of the Year at Nós Music Awards 2017.
Notes to the editor:
About Foras na Gaeilge
Foras na Gaeilge, the body responsible for the promotion of the Irish language throughout the whole island of Ireland, was founded on the second day of December 1999.
In the Good Friday Agreement, it was stated that a North/South Implementation body be set up to promote both the Irish language and the Ulster Scots language. Under the auspices of this body, Foras na Gaeilge carries out all the designated responsibilities regarding the Irish language. This entails facilitating and encouraging the speaking and writing of Irish in the public and private arena in the Republic of Ireland, and in Northern Ireland where there is appropriate demand, in the context of part three of the European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages. The staff of Bord na Gaeilge, An Gúm (Publishers), and An Coiste Téarmaíochta (Terminology Committee) and their activities have all been transferred to the new body.
Foras na Gaeilge is proud of its role in advising administrations, North and South, as well as public bodies and other groups in the private and voluntary sectors in all matters relating to the Irish language as well as the supportive projects it undertakes with grant-aiding bodies and groups throughout the island of Ireland.
About 63-66 Amiens Street
Since Foras na Gaeilge was established the cross-border body’s head office was in the premises previously occupied by Bord na Gaeilge at 7 Merrion Square, Dublin 2. Bord na Gaeilge came to an end when Foras na Gaeilge was established in 1999, and Bord na Gaeilge staff transferred to Foras na Gaeilge. The old Georgian house on Merrion Square had a long history and some staff members were based there from 1981 until Dublin staff transferred to 63-66 Amiens Street, Dublin 1, in October 2017.
The facilities at 63-66 Amiens Street include the innovative radio studios of the Raidió na Life, 106.4fm, and a venue where Foras na Gaeilge and Irish language organisations will hold events.
Clúid Housing was based at 63-66 Amiens Street in recent years and is now based on Sheriff Street Lower, Dublin 1.
IMLÉ is an unconventional band with a unique sound arising out of the diverse backgrounds of the three singers. Poetry, rap and pop are woven together in the band’s sound in a new style not heard before – especially through Irish. The otherworldly voice of Ferghal Moloney is mixed with the lithe addictive rapping of MC Muipéad.
‘To create something different, uncompromising and honest’; this was the band’s mission statement when the bass guitarist Cian Mac Cárthaigh first set up the band, and their first album looks at the big questions in life: the meaning of life, our relationship with the planet and finding hope in hopelessness.
Anna Davitt, Programme Manager: Communications, Marketing & Awareness, Foras na Gaeilge
Tel: 0035387 673 6175