Galway businesses support a bilingual city

Gearóidín Ní Ghioballáin, Gaillimh le Gaeilge and Ken Walsh, Food 4 Thought enjoying a cup of tea outside the well known café on Lower Abbeygate Street. Bilingual signage is in use both inside and outside the café.

Gearóidín Ní Ghioballáin, Gaillimh le Gaeilge and Ken Walsh, Food 4 Thought enjoying a cup of tea outside the well known café on Lower Abbeygate Street. Bilingual signage is in use both inside and outside the café.

Galway has in recent years witnessed an increase in the use of bilingual signage in the city. This is largely due to the work of Gaillimh le Gaeilge in partnership with Galway City Council and the business community through the Galway Chamber and other groups, to develop Galway’s unique Irish image and to gain bilingual status for the city.

Gaillimh le Gaeilge is delighted to see local businesses continue to incorporate the Irish language into the overall image of their business. They believe that this is particularly important for businesses in the hospitality sector as the use of the Irish language helps them to deliver on the ‘unique experience’ and the ‘céad míle fáilte’ our visitors wish to experience when they visit our cultural city.

Cupán Tae is a tea shop which has recently opened its doors in the Spanish Arch in Galway city. The Irish name ensures that the language is an integral feature of the coffee shop with external bilingual signage welcoming people in. Manager of the tea shop Alison McArdle said that she was “overwhelmed by the response to the Irish signage and name of the shop. This has inspired us to move forward and introduce bilingualism into the tea-shop beyond the signage. We believe the name matches the concept which we would like to portray and creates a sense of nostalgia”.

Food 4 Thought is a family-run café on Lower Abbeygate Street that has been serving home made quality food to the people of Galway for the past 26 years. They were finalists in the Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh award and have revamped their shop front to incorporate the Irish language into the name of the café. Bilingual signage is also evident inside the café and the seanfhocal have become a talking point in the café.

The manager of Food 4 Thought Ken Walsh said, “We have received fantastic feedback and encouragement since including both visual and vocal Irish into our business, and have found people are interested and excited to use their ‘cúpla focal’. Galway is fortunate to be renowned both nationally and internationally for nurturing the Irish language and its culture and Food 4 Thought / Bia don Smaointeoireacht is delighted to play its part in this."

Eyre Square Shopping Centre incorporates over 70 international, national and local shopping and is currently celebrating 20 years in business. Over the last year or so, Eyre Square Shopping Centre has incorporated the use of the Irish language into its newly installed bilingual mall signage, floor directories and promotional material. They have also included some Irish in their 20 year birthday celebrations.

Gaillimh le Gaeilge’s role is to encourage business to use Irish in their visual material, such as signage, stationery, menus, marketing and in social media, so that both residents and visitors alike will feel like they are in a unique place as they wander the medieval streets of our city. They also impresses on business people that the Irish language is an irreplaceable element of the city’s identity.

Speaking on behalf of Gaillimh le Geailge, Gearóidín Ní Ghioballáin said; The Irish language is worth over €136 million to Galway City and to the Galway Gaeltacht anually. It’s important that Galway businesses continue to increase their use of the Irish language at every given opportunity so that both Irish itself and the benefit derived from it are maintained and strengthened in the city. We are delighted that businesses such as the Cupán Tae, Eyre Square Centre, and Food 4 Thought are using the Irish language in their signage. The Irish language is our ‘unique selling point’ and it also attracts ‘positive attention’ towards the company using it. The efforts of these businesses today will strengthen and further support Galway’s case for bilingual status.” she concluded.

If you would like to reap the benefits and advantages of using the Irish Language in your business, please contact Gaillimh le Gaeilge on 091 568876 or send an email [email protected]. Gaillimh le Gaeilge works in association with Galway City Council, Galway Chamber and other groups in Galway city in promoting Galway as a bilingual city.

Ba mhaith le Gaillimh le Gaeilge gach rath a ghuí ar Cupán Tae, Eyre Square Centre agus Food 4 Thought don todhchaí. Go fada buan iad!


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