Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees
Wednesday, 22 September 2021
Joint Committee on the Irish Language, the Gaeltacht and the Irish Speaking Community
Beart na Breatnaise agus Caighdeáin Teanga: Coimisinéir Teanga na Breataine Bige
Mr. Roberts is very welcome agus cuirim fáilte roimhe. Croeso i'r pwyllgor, if I am pronouncing that correctly. I have been very encouraged by what he has said regarding dealing with public bodies and so on. He has covered some of this already but how challenging or realistic is the target of having 1 million Welsh speakers by 2050? What resistance to the Welsh language standards has there been from the civil service, the public or departments? I recently received a complaint from a constituent who was dealing with Kerry County Council. She made her planning application completely as Gaeilge but the refusal of the planning permission was completely in English. A motion was put to Kerry County Council that anyone making an application in Irish would get a reply in Irish. The reply given was that arrangements are in place for a service as Gaeilge to be provided where requested by a customer. Obviously the fact her application was completely as Gaeilge was considered irrelevant unless there was a specific request on top of that.
I would also like to ask the commissioner something about road signage. Having driven through Wales, I have seen the signs for Abertawe, Swansea. Was the changing of all road signs arranged by regulation or was the passing of legislation in either the Welsh Parliament or the other parliament required? I would appreciate it if the commissioner would answer those two questions.