Plaudit For Airport Over Language policy

The general secretary (GS) of the Celtic League has written to Cardiff Airport to congratulate them on their new bilingual Welsh/English language policy, which he says has “really made the airport stand out” compared to previously.

At the 2010 AGM in Mannin/Isle of Man delegates unanimously agreed a resolution relating to the use of the different Celtic languages in airports in the Celtic countries. The resolution stated:

“This AGM

Notes the general lack of Celtic language signage in airports and ferry terminals, other than occasional phrases for tourists, and calls upon all Celtic countries to rectify this.”

In his letter, the GS said that he will be writing to other airports in the Celtic countries pointing out the Welsh language policy being upheld in Cardiff Airport in an attempt to share good practice. The full text of the GS letter can be found below.

info@…
Patrick Duffy
Managing Director
Maes Awyr Caerdydd/Cardiff Airport

24/11/10

Dear Patrick Duffy

Welsh language policy

Early this year I was encouraged, when arriving at Maes Awyr Caerdydd/Cardiff Airport, to see more of the Welsh language on signs than I remember seeing previously. This approach has really made the airport stand out and made me feel immediately at home.

In the past I have written several times pointing out the limited use of the Welsh language at the airport, which for many visitors to Wales is their first point of contact to the country. In this respect Maes Awyr Caerdydd has a very important role to play in showing visitors that Wales is proud of its cultural and linguistic heritage.

In fact due to the almost embarrassing tokenistic use of the Welsh language at the airport, I have previously felt discouraged from flying from the airport on occasion, when with colleagues and friends from outside of Wales, such has been my strength of feeling over the issue.

However our members have informed me that it is now the policy of the airport to replace all of its signs with fully bilingual ones. In carrying out an internet search I have been pleased to note that your Welsh language policy is not only constricted to the immediate public domain of the airport’s premises, but is also incorporated into the daily life of the airport through its advertising and stationary and that staff are encouraged to develop and use their Welsh language skills in their work too.

Many thanks again for having the vision to adopt this far sighted policy in relation to the Welsh language and I will be writing to other airports in the Celtic countries to share this good working practice.

Yours sincerely

Rhisiart Tal-e-bot
General Secretary
Celtic League”

For follow-up comment or clarification contact:

Tel: 0044 (0)1209315884 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              

M: 0044(0)7787318666 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              

gensec@celticleague.net

J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
Celtic League

24/11/10

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