BBC: omits Irish from Charter

Concubhar Ó Liatháin asks why when the new version of the BBC charter speaks about the Corporation’s committment to Welsh and Scots, there is no mention of Irish.

  • Fanny

    A GCSE does not fluency make.
    10% of the population speaks Irish like 100% of the population speaks French.

  • Blackadder

    “According to the last census 161,000, or approximately 10% of the population of the six counties, said they spoke Irish,”

    I wonder how many of that 161,000 can actually speak Irish, or maybe only know a phrase or two?

  • Davros

    It’s a good question. As there’s a reasonable demand for Irish it seems tactless at the very least not to
    incorporate a commitment to providing Irish content.

  • mnob

    I dont speak Irish and wasn’t taught it in school (can you tell I’m a prod !).

    I do think its unfair if the BBC do not include Irish in the charter – the BBC more than anyone should be doing everything it can to protect the interests of minority groups (minority in the UK context).

  • Fanny

    As the ‘language activists’ won’t be happpy unless 10% of output is in Irish, and that’s a completely unrealistic demand, then BBC-NI might as well not bother.
    Here’s a good lesson for all ‘activists’ in Northern Ireland. If you’ll never be satisfied, then there’s no point trying to satisfy you.

  • Bored

    The BBC is a sectarian farce. Let’s look at the evidence:-

    ‘Radio Ulster’ – Hhhhmmm…. see, the clue’s in the name. ‘Ulster’ as a term to describe Northern Ireland is used primarily, if not exclusively by those of a Unionist/loyalist persuasion (Nationalist/republicans would point out that Ulster has nine counties etc. etc. etc.) Straight off the bat then, the station has chosen to align itself with one section of the community in its choice of nomenclature.

    Listen to ‘Radio Ulster’ for any length of time and you start to realise that this one-sided alignment runs deep. Northern Ireland is routinely referred to by reporters, newsreaders, presenters etc. as ‘the province’. Again, this is a term for Northern Ireland used primarily, if not exclusively by the Unionist/Loyalist community. In and of itself this is of course entirely acceptable – people can refer to Northern Ireland however they see fit. The problem however arises from the fact that comparable Nationalist/Republican descriptions of Northern Ireland (‘the North’, ‘Six Counties’ etc.) are NEVER used by any of the stations broadcasting staff. I have it on good authority from a friend who works in the BBC that such expressions are in fact expressly forbidden on air.

    Rather more bizarre is the stations insistence on referring to ‘Londonderry’ at the commencement of any broadcast piece dealing with the city. It appears that once described as ‘Londonderry’ at the commencement of a piece the term ‘Derry’ can then be used for the remainder of the article. Again, fine in and of itself until you cross the Bann and start to tune in to Radio Foyle. There (and remember folks, this is the station which actually broadcasts to the city) the term ‘Londonderry’ is rarely used by the stations broadcasters and ‘Derry’ is the norm. Why ?

    Anyway, if the broadcaster wants to be honest and genuine about equality it should afford parity of esteem between the traditions and either (a) restrict its broadcasting staff to using ‘Northern Ireland’ to describe the state or (far more sensibly) (b) allow broadcasters to use either ‘Ulster’, ‘province’ etc. or ‘the North’, ‘Six Counties’ etc. as they see fit.

  • Davros

    The clue is in the name Bored. BBC. British Broadcasting Corporation.

  • Bored

    Davros – oh, dear. Did you actually READ my post?

  • Ricardo

    Your joking, aren’t you bored?

  • Davros

    Yes I did. I was wondering why in your list of complaints you didn’t demand that the BBC be renamed so as not to reflect it’s origins?
    When I listen to RTE it doesn’t bother me in the least when I notice an “Irish” ( as in nationalist) slant so why complain about a British slant in the BBC? I do think, however, that ‘Irish'(the language) should get a fair crack of the whip on the BBC.

  • George

    British organisations like the BBC using the term Radio Ulster is extremely offensive to many Irish people as it is laying claim to being the public broadcaster to about 20% of the Irish Republic and over half a million of its citizens.

    I thought the days of territorial claims were over but obviously the British establishment hasn’t got that into its skull yet.

    It should change its name to Radio Northern Ireland or else Northern Ireland.

  • Blackadder

    “British organisations like the BBC using the term Radio Ulster is extremely offensive to many Irish people as it is laying claim to being the public broadcaster to about 20% of the Irish Republic and over half a million of its citizens.

    I thought the days of territorial claims were over but obviously the British establishment hasn’t got that into its skull yet.

    It should change its name to Radio Northern Ireland or else Northern Ireland.”

    I don’t think anyone should have a problem with that, there is no doubt that Radio Ulster is a misleading term.

  • Bored

    Davros, I have absolutely no problem with the BBC calling itself the BBC – as you properly point out, that simply reflects its origins. What I do have a problem with though, is an employer compelling it’s staff to adopt the descriptive habits of one half of the community over the other. You’re surely not defending the BBC’s diktat barring its presenters from describing Northern Ireland as ‘The North’ or ‘The Six Counties’ are you? How would you feel if you’re current employer turned around on Monday morning and said – “O.K. Davros – from now on you’re to only refer to this country as ‘The North’ or ‘The Six Counties'” ?

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    The 9-county non-entity exists only for the purposes of GAA. I won’t even include the Rugby side because it’s a club side anyway.

    Besides, if it had been BBC Radio Northern Ireland, not only would it be more long and drawn out, but it would then be referring to a ‘non-state’ as NI is so oft referred and would surely just be as ‘offensive’ 😉

    Sure the Daily Ireland only sells in about half of the island too – should it be renamed Daily North of Ireland? Wise up.

    Why should the British Broadcasting Corporation use fictitious, provocative and ambiguous terms like the “six counties” to undermine the constitution of the United Kingdom anyway?

    I don’t think 10% of output’s a good target. How about basing the target on how often that 10% of the population actually speak in Irish. We’d likely get somewhere near 0.5% which I could probably live with if it were broadcast at 4 in the morning.

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    Let me clarify.

    The “six counties” could be any six counties. There are a lot to choose from in the UK.

    ‘The North’ – we’re not Scotland!

  • Bored

    ‘Fictitious, provocative and ambiguous terms’, what – like ‘Ulster’?

  • Keith M

    The answer to this is very simple; unlike Scots Gaelic and Welsh, the number of people in the U.K. who have Irish Gaelic or Ulster Scots as their first language is negligable. I suspect that if you survey everyone in the UK, you would find that there are over a hundred other first languages before you got to Irish Gaelic.

  • Davros

    UTV anybody ?

  • Bored

    ‘Northern Ireland’ – what’s the most northerly part of Ireland ? Yep, you’ve guessed it – Donegal.

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    But unlike “the six counties” or “the North” (surely more ambiguous than NI) Northern Ireland has borders fixed and recognised in law.

    “‘Northern Ireland’ – what’s the most northerly part of Ireland ? Yep, you’ve guessed it – Donegal.”
    Yet another reason to use the term Ulster instead, surely 😉

  • peteb

    Radio Ga Ga?

  • Peter

    “The clue is in the name Bored. BBC. British Broadcasting Corporation.”

    It obviously can’t be anything to do with that since BBC Scotland and Wales have no problems with Scots and Welsh Gaelic.

    The problem with BBC NI is that it thinks it should always be biased in favour of Unionism, which in itself is a perversion of its remit in a divided part of the UK. That’s always been the BBC NI problem. It supports rather than challenges those unBritish aspects of Ulster Unionism.

  • Blackadder

    “What I do have a problem with though, is an employer compelling it’s staff to adopt the descriptive habits of one half of the community over the other”

    Well, sometimes at work you have to stick to guidelines provided by your employer eg answering the phone or certain work processes. Given that the BBC is British and the country Northern Ireland is British, it doesn’t seem strange to me that they ask their employees to refer to it as this, even if some count themselves as Irish.

  • Bored

    Again, Blackadder – actually READ my post. What I’m complaining about is the insistence on the terms ‘province’ and ‘Ulster’.

  • George

    Beano,
    “The 9-county non-entity exists only for the purposes of GAA.”

    And where did you derive this gem of information? Are you now saying Donegal isn’t part of Ulster as you know it?

    That really shows how much you know about the approximately 5 million Irish people on this island.

    It is not for you or the British government to decide what the Irish people consider is or isn’t an “entity” to them.

    Personally, I think your own obvious attachment to the term “Ulster” clearly shows that you are unable or unwilling to present the British construct of “Northern Ireland” as an “entity” of any kind.

    What’s wrong with the term “Northern Ireland”, after all that is the name of the place?

    Perhaps it is that you hanker for those parts jettisoned for the supposed greater Irish Protestant good over 80 years ago?

    Do you not realise that it is this act makes unionism’s continued use of the term “Ulster” all the more ridiculous and pathetic in the eyes of those who live in Cavan, Monaghan and Donegal?

    Unionists could have had “Ulster” if they wanted it but decided better a Protestant Northern Ireland six than a pluralist Ulster nine.

    Live with it.

  • Davros

    It obviously can’t be anything to do with that since BBC Scotland and Wales have no problems with Scots and Welsh Gaelic.

    Wasn’t referring to the Gaelic part Peter, but to bored’s non-gaelic language issues with the BBC favouring British rather than Irish nationalist stances and attitudes. We all have an on/off switch.
    That’s what I say to people who find the presence of Irish language offensive on the airwaves. Applies across the board.

  • Davros

    It is not for you or the British government to decide what the Irish people consider is or isn’t an “entity” to them.

    it could as easily be pointed out that it’s not upto someone from the 26 counties to tell us how we can or cannot decide to refer to ourselves George.

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    “It is not for you or the British government to decide what the Irish people consider is or isn’t an “entity” to them”

    I’m not the British government, but you have no more right to tell me Ulster has 9 counties than I do telling you it lost 3 of them to the Free State in 1920.

    None of this really changes the fact that Welsh and Scottish Gaelic are not only more widley used (in the fact that they are indeed used!) but also less politically charged.

  • Bored

    Good point Davros – my problem with switching off though is that there is no real alternative in Belfast. Cool FM, Shitty Beat etc. are utterly facile outfits designed for uber-chavs all jacked-up on Tizer and Irn Bru. My natural choice – RTE Radio 1 – suffers (despite all of the promises under the Good Friday Agreement) from very poor signal strength in the Belfast area.
    Anyway, you still haven’t answered my previous question – how would you feel if you’re employer informed you that referring to Northern Ireland as ‘Ulster’ or ‘the Province’ was now a disciplinary offence?

  • Davros

    how would you feel if you’re employer informed you that referring to Northern Ireland as ‘Ulster’ or ‘the Province’ was now a disciplinary offence?

    I’d be amused and start looking for a different job.
    Then I’d toddle down to the PFC and ask about a claim for constructive dismissal and if they refused to help me I’d report them to the equality commission and the Law society…..

    The above was a tad facetious, but I wanted to show how silly this is, a bit like the joke about the Old woman who calls the police complaining that her neighbour is flashing … when the cops arrive they don’t see anything – and the old lady replies -“You have to climb onto the roof and use the Telescope I have up there”.

    This is as pointless IMO as the long running debate over whether we should refer to the 26 counties as “Ireland”.

    The vast majority of people in NI don’t give a damn about whether it’s called Radio Ulster or Radio N.I. If a large number did, I’d take it seriously. This in some ways reminds me of a Vegan friend who gets really angry at cookery shows featuring Meat recipes – he says it’s deeply offensive to all vegans. Should meat recipes be banned from TV ?

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    “Anyway, you still haven’t answered my previous question – how would you feel if you’re employer informed you that referring to Northern Ireland as ‘Ulster’ or ‘the Province’ was now a disciplinary offence?”

    If I was in broadcasting or talking to customers I’ve no problem with that, as long as I’m allowed to call it Northern Ireland and not whatever name Sinn Fein have decided to use for NI that particular week.

  • Bored

    Fair enough Davros – ridicule the issue if you will. I suspect that if the shoe was on the other foot though you’re approach might be somewhat different…..

  • peteb

    This is [] pointless IMO

    Indeed.

    Paul may have to reconsider his nomination.. if he reads this thread..

  • Ringo

    George –

    British organisations like the BBC using the term Radio Ulster is extremely offensive to many Irish people as it is laying claim to being the public broadcaster to about 20% of the Irish Republic and over half a million of its citizens.

    what about Radio Foyle? As far as I am aware, nobody at all lives in the River Foyle – are the BBC laying claim to being the public broadcaster to over half a million fishies too?

    Ease up, man. We’ve flogged the whole Ireland/Ulster thing to death here. Whether you like it or not a new (additional) interpretation of the word Ulster has entered usage in the 80 odd years since the treaty. You got Ireland, they got Ulster.

    Live with it.

  • Davros

    I suspect that if the shoe was on the other foot though you’re approach might be somewhat different…..

    It wouldn’t Bored – hence my comments about 26 counties and Ireland and my comment about not being bothered by the different slant offered when I listen to RTE. I don’t feel my Human rights have been violated if an RTE presenter talks about “Derry” or anything equivalent to the petty quibbles presented here about the BBC – excepting for the Irish bit about which from the beginning I have said that the BBC charter should include a committment.

  • maca

    Bored
    “RTE Radio 1 – suffers from very poor signal strength in the Belfast area.”

    Have you tried online?
    http://www.rte.ie/smiltest/radio_new.smil

    Beano
    “the fact that Welsh and Scottish Gaelic are not only more widley used (in the fact that they are indeed used!)”

    Have you checked your figures? just curious.

    On to the topic…
    While 10% of programming as gaeilge is unrealistic in my opinion, the current 10hrs per year (if that is correct) is an insult.
    They have a nice Irish website, they should try to put in on the airwaves more, IMO.

    Plus, the UK has signed the COE Charter in respect of Irish (afaik), so they should try to provide for it if possible.

  • Davros

    Excellent post Ringo, a breath of fresh air.

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    Old figures, but nevertheless:
    “The 1991 census indicated that there are over 500,000 Welsh speakers (19% of the population)”

    “The 1991 census revealed that there are 142,003 people in Northern Ireland claiming knowledge of the language (this includes people who do not … speak the language)”

    And in a previous survey, only 16% of those claiming “some knowledge” of the language ever actually used it.

    I may have to retract what I said about Scottish gaelic though:
    “The 1991 census indicated that there were about 67,000 speakers of Gaelic”
    It does seem to be very strong in the Western Isles though, but I think what they did in the recent election renaming the constituency was taking the piss a bit.

  • maca

    Beano
    I won’t challenge you on Welsh as I know those lads are champion speakers.

    But figures I saw recently for Gaelic were not as encouraging. I must try to find the link but one data table showed 40-50K people over the various age groups with a knowledge of the language and only about 70-80% of that were actual speakers (no idea of fluency).

    Anyone know how much Gaelic is on tv/radio in Scotland?

  • james Orr

    The last line in the piece is significant:

    “…According to a source, the omission of any specific mention of the Irish language in the BBC document was down to fears within BBCNI of the possible reaction this would prompt from the Ulster Scots lobby…”

    Are the BBC really that frightened of Ulster Scots?

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    Taken from the same source as above:
    “Numerical strength: The General Register Office (Scotland) in 1996 estimated the number of Scots speakers at 1.5 million. Other surveys have suggested higher numbers.”

  • Baluba

    Some people here seem to have misread the article. We are not looking for 10% programming in Irish, that was said in reference to census percentages. The article finished by saying 10 hours per annum.

    Proper availability of TG4 and RTÉ would be infinitely better than any BBC Irish programming anyway, since they just rejected every single submission for programming that was submitted recently on shakey political grounds.

    Irish programming on the BBC it would seem, will be sterile anyway.

  • Baluba

    “A GCSE does not fluency make.
    10% of the population speaks Irish like 100% of the population speaks French. Fanny.”

    No, it certainly doesn’t. However, the thousands of chldren (yes, thousands – over 2 thousand in Belfast alone) of children who are being educated at the moment exclusively through the medium of Irish are native speakers of one of the indigenous languages of Ireland.

    Surely you can see the difference between their language rights and the rights of GCSE French students, who by the way, I am not aware of being too aggrieved.

  • seanbheanbhocht

    Mo náire ar an BBC agus ar an chác atá á rá. An mbeadh duine ar bith sásta gan an cheadúnas teilifíse a cheannach?

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    “According to the last census 161,000, or approximately 10% of the population of the six counties, said they spoke Irish,”

    To clarify, 167,000 claimed “some knowledge of Irish”, my interpretation of the figures was that 143,323 people claimed the ability to speak Irish. Given the findings of the 1987 survey, I just wonder how many of these people’s ability in Irish extends only a little further than “Failte” and “Tiocfaidh Ar La”.

  • Joska

    “Are the BBC really that frightened of Ulster Scots?”

    Very probably. Laird Laird has a bit of a habit of making dubious allegations under parliamentary privilege

  • Baluba

    Má tá ceann ceannaithe agat cheana féin, a sheanmhnaoi, tá dul amú déanta agat. Do náire mo náire fosta, a chara. Breast thú mar BBC!

  • Hee hee hee

    “…According to a source, the omission of any specific mention of the Irish language in the BBC document was down to fears within BBCNI of the possible reaction this would prompt from the Ulster Scots lobby…”

    Thar bees nay sootch thang as oolster scoots.

    The ability to speak like the Simpsons’ “Groundskeeper Willy” does not a language make!!!!

  • Baluba

    Beano, I too would mistrust the census figures because it’s a fact that people lie on them for whatever petty gain they perceive to be available. However, the number of people who have gone through Irish-medium education is indeed a large number and they are fluent speakers. This is a better barometer.

    On the Falls Road, you could visit doctors, dentists, butchers, solicitors, banks, bars, cafes etc etc etc where Irish can be spoken to the staff and other customers.

    There have also been Irish classes on the Shankill for a long time now too. In Lá you can read a column called ‘An Lámh Dhearg’ meaning ‘The Red Hand’ by a Protestant and Unionist. On St. Patrick’s Day, you can attend the Church of Ireland church behind Queens to here sermons cnducted in Irish.

    There are many, many Irish speakers around who are not seen or heard because they don’t advertise it. As a child I myself was told never to speak it in public.

  • maca

    Beano
    “I just wonder how many of these people’s ability in Irish extends only a little further than “Failte” and “Tiocfaidh Ar La”.”

    The figure covers the whole range of fluency, from the “Fáilte” folk to those with complete fluency.

  • james Orr

    Hee Hee Hee,
    If thats the case then the question remains – why is the BBC allegedly concerned about them?

  • George

    Ringo,
    actually they could have gotten “Ulster” (in name and in territory) but turned it down in favour of a reduced “Northern Ireland”. That’s what’s they have to live with regardless if people try dress it up otherwise but I agree this has been flogged to death.

  • Baluba

    James Orr. I think that the BBC fears the Ulster Scots backlash because people working with Irish on the ground have found that it is currently used as a stumbling block to prevent further use of Irish rather than any concerted effort to bring it itself into further into the public realm.

    For example, when there were recent discussions with Belfast City Council about bi-lingual signage in the Falls Swim Centre, one of the main points was, ‘if we do it for Irish, we have to do it for Ullans’. No-one was lobbying for Ullans at the time in this issue at all, but it was set-up to block the use of Irish.

    This is one example of what is happening often. No, we can’t do that for Irish, because that other crowd will want the same. Even when they’re not lobbying for it.

  • james Orr

    Baluba,
    Thanks for that. What do Irish language people think of Ulster-Scots? Do they see past Laird and politics to recognise any sort of valid tradition – or is it just seen as a spoiler?

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    “No, we can’t do that for Irish, because that other crowd will want the same. Even when they’re not lobbying for it.”

    But such is the nature of Northern Irish ‘politics’ that they surely would and these people are just pre-empting that, no?

  • maca

    James
    “Do they see past Laird and politics to recognise any sort of valid tradition – or is it just seen as a spoiler?”

    I’m not from the North but i’m a strong supporter of the Irish language and i’d also consider myself a Ulster Scots ‘supporter’. However I won’t support any “strand of unionism” ulster scots and I won’t support anything involving Laird … as he is anti-Irish(lang) IMO.

  • Baluba

    James, I couldn’t possibly comment on what all Irish speakers think of Ulster Scots. My own opinion is that it is extremely interesting and I lament steadily losing a lot of the words from my own speech and from the common vernacular as the English language centralises and dumbs down. I don’t think it is a language however.

    An old Professor of mine, Dónall Ó Baoill however, would also argue it’s merits as an independent strand of the Germanic language of English. I certainly don’t see the dialect as a spoiler, but unfortunately it is being used by certain people in that manner.

    Many Irish speakers whom I know do think it is a joke. Many, many English speakers whom I know agree with them. Ironically some fierce supporters of Irish are fierce defenders of ‘good English’ whatever that is.

    In short, I do not think it is a language from a purely linguistic point of view, but I see it as an extremely valuable part of our shared linguistic heritage here. I hope that i won’t be looked at with puzzlement by my grandchildren when I say, ‘I mind the time when yer man fernenst had a bake like a Lurgan spade on him’.

    Bad English? I don’t agree. Good Ullans? Most definitely.

  • Tadhgin

    Ah yes the joys of slugger’s commenters – everything is something to be put out about.

    Why not call it BBC Radio Ulster? You certainly can receive it across all of Ulster and it is listened to in the lost three.

    Regarding calling the State of NI the six counties my preferred moniker is the occupied 26 district councils!

    IMO Irish should be treated as an integral part of the heritage of the UK (and the strong links with Scots Gaelic would mean that this would be the case even if none of Ireland were part of the UK).

    But isn’t it easier to just enjoy letting your blood boil.

  • GavBelfast

    Tadhgin,

    Splendid good sense there.

    What on earth are you doing in here???

  • Fanny

    Indeed. There is only one group of people in the province of Ulster who make a point of getting worked up about BBC-NI in this fashion – and under the circumstances, I think they would be better off spending their time putting the newspaper together, don’t you?

  • thebabyjesus

    I believe that Concubhar has every right as a license fee payer to…..Oh! sorry there.

  • Davros

    The BBC is the natural place for Irish – as advertisers wouldn’t react positively to the listening/viewing figures it would attract on Independent TV or radio. That was seen way back in the Free state’s experience with Radio from the 30’s onwards. In fact this advertising/funding was a big part of the reason that Jazz and singing by Bing Crosby was banned from RTE radio.

  • IJP

    Tadhgin

    Away on would ye, this is no place for such sense!

    ‘The Occupied 17 Health Action Zones’ never did quite have a ring to it, I must confess…

  • George

    Davros,
    Irish language station TG4 gets around the same viewing figures as Channel 4 in the Irish Republic and more than Sky so advertisers are very happy to advertise on it.

    tóg sos, tóg kit kat, for example .

  • Davros

    George – I don’t follow your point.

  • George

    I thought when you wrote “The BBC is the natural place for Irish – as advertisers wouldn’t react positively to the listening/viewing figures it would attract on Independent TV or radio” that you meant the viewing figures for Irish language programmes wouldn’t attract advertisers.

  • Davros

    TG4 is quite heavily subsidised for starters and an all Irish channel in the North would presumably attract a reasonably constant audience, if at a low level. However mixing Irish output programs with English programs on mainstream Channel will show a very different pattern and one that would I supect put pressure for subsidy on UTV – hence my comment that The BBC is the natural home. In the late 50’s in the 26 counties it was found that while R.É had a virtual monopoly on the airwaves – 80% odd, there was a huge difference in audiences – only 1% listened to the 6PM news in Irish whereas 41% listened to the 6.30PM news in English.
    In a purely commercial set up, how enthusiastic are advertisers and broadcasters going to be about that sort of disparity on prime-time ?
    That’s the point I was trying to make.

    There’s a big difference in the broadcasting histories between the Reithian doctrine of the BBC and the State control/funding ethos in the 26.

    Mind you, Dr Who will be on in a minute – it’d be a great incentive to learn Irish , regardless of whether or not it has Rose Tyler, if it was broadcast only in Irish 😉

  • George

    Doctor Who or Doctuir Cad e as we call him? Im out of here….

  • garret

    Radio Ulster should have more Irish at peak times – say in the breakfast drive time and the evening drive time. It is insulting that it is relegated to 7:30pm the dead slot. BBC 1 NI should have Irish in peak time. It does not.

  • Davros

    Blimey – what a great episode! I cannot wait for next week!

  • Dave

    To be REALLY pedantic about things, the BBC (British Broadcasting Corp.) has technically in name nothing to do with Northern Ireland, since Britain is the island comprising England, Scotland and Wales. So it really should be called the UKBC – which doesn’t sounds half as catchy.

    Perhaps the reason that the Beeb has no commitment to the Irish language is that there are virtually no native Irish speakers in Northern Ireland? And besides, isn’t the second most spoken language in Northern Ireland Cantonese or Mandarin?

  • Davros

    Dave – to be even More pedantic – ‘British’ as in British Isles 😉