Originally posted by bonkey
So call me hard-hearted, but I honestly don't see Irish signposts as a problem except for English-only speakers...and lets fdace it....the language of the signage is likely to be the least problem they face in the Gaeltacht.
English-only speakers don't seem to have any particular problem in the Gaeltacht, as they share that language with most of the inhabitants. However, the point about placenames has to do with the imposition of redundant or manufactured Gaelic names where other names are actually the ones in daily use. It seems to be another daft imposition coming from the Official Language Act.
This issue has already attracted an amount of comment on a thread in the Commuting/Transport area.
Placenames plan is 'ridiculous' - tourism chief
Thursday, 1st July, 2004
The Chairman of the North West Tourism Board has described as "absolutely ridiculous" the new Placenames Order (Gaeltacht Districts) 2004.
The draft order published today by the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, Mr O'Cuiv, means the English version of placenames in Gaeltacht areas will no longer have legal standing.
The order will no longer permit the use of the English version of placenames in the Acts of the Oireachtas, in statutory instruments, on road and street signage or on Ordnance Survey maps.
Speaking on RTÉ Radio this morning, Councillor Sean McEniff (FF), Chairman of North West Tourism, said that in many cases "the Irish names bear no resemblance to the English versions".
He claimed the new order will result in confusion for tourists from across the border as well as England and America.
"People will not know where they are going because, after all ,when they get out their maps they are in English," said Mr McEniff.
However, Mr O'Cuiv today defended the draft order, saying he didn't understand the issues raised by Mr Eniff . "The placenames have been in Irish in Gaeltacht areas since the 1970s when Bobby Molloy made the order," Mr O'Cuiv said.
"The fact was that none of them were official in the Irish language, only in English," he said. "What the new order does is reverse that in Gaeltacht areas, making the Irish form the official one in these areas," Mr O'Cuiv added.
Mr O'Cuiv pointed out that Ordnance Survey maps show both English and Irish versions of placenames.
About 2,119 placenames of villages and towns in the country's Gaeltacht areas are listed in the draft order, which was published this morning .
"The names have been recommended by the Placenames Commission, and concern the places' history, spelling etc . . . " said Mr O'Cuiv.
"Rather than sign the order, we've given a period of consultation for people of the Gaeltacht to make submissions. Most of them will not be contentious," he added.
The draft list of the Gaeltacht placenames is available on the Department website at www.pobail.ie