Board meetings to be made public for the first time

Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s board meetings will be streamed live from Tuesday 26 May 2020.

This is the first time the Board has invited the public to meetings and demonstrates the Board’s commitment to increase openness and transparency following the Audit report by Deloitte last year.

This development is 4 months ahead of schedule, with meetings previously due to be made public in Inverness from September 2020.

Newly appointed Chair, Màiri MacInnes said: “One of the first things I aimed to do after being appointed was to make our meetings open to the public and ensure it happened as quickly as possible. Due to the dedicated work of employees we were able to bring this forward by four months and share the work of Bòrd na Gàidhlig to those who are most interested in it – the public.

“We welcome Gaelic speakers from across the country to come and listen to the meeting and the points discussed.”
In the first instance, Gaelic speakers are invited to watch the meeting with agenda and relevant papers being published online 5 days before each meeting. In the months to come, the Bòrd will look at ways to simulcast meetings in Gaelic with an English translation for non-Gaelic speakers.

Quarterly Board Meeting
Tuesday 26th May 2020 – 10.00-15.00
Streamed live online via link on the Bòrd’s website.
Agenda and papers can be found here:

Programme of live online Gaelic medium activities launched to support parents – #cleachdiaigantaigh / #useitathome



Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s website will host the online programme with links to a range of interactive resources and after school events for young people.  This will allow children to use their Gaelic in the home setting.  

The Bòrd have been working closely with Gaelic youth organisations Fèisean nan Gàidheal and Comunn na Gàidhlig (CnaG) to develop the online programme. Some of these live afterschool activities include online music lessons, baking tutorials, scavenger hunts and home work help amongst a range of others. 

Daibhidh Boag, Director of Language Planning and Community Developments said:  

“It is important at this time that, now more than ever, young people are supported to use Gaelic at home as much as possible, at a time when schools are closed and other face-to-face after school activities are on hold.” 

“We want to bring lots of information together in one, easily accessible place, signposting to a range of activities that will help young people access on-line Gaelic medium extra-curricular activities.  We hope that over the next few weeks, more organisations will add to and enhance the programme further.” 


“We would encourage the Gaelic community to use the #cleachdiaigantaigh hashtag to share resources, ideas and content to support the use of Gaelic as much as possible at this time in homes across the country.” 


“Family members and friends can help too by speaking Gaelic as often as they can with young people – in person, on-line or on the phone – ensuring that their language skills continue to develop during this time and into the future.” 

#cleachdiaigantaigh / #useitathome is the next stage of the successful #cleachdi.  Launched last year, this campaign’s aim is to encourage Gaelic speakers to let Scotland and the world know they are proud to speak the language. 

Groups funded by Bòrd na Gàidhlig, Fèisean nan Gàidheal and CnaG will be encouraging the use of #cleachdiaigantaigh / #useitathome with their participants. 

Arthur Cormack, Fèisean nan Gàidheal’s chief executive officer said: “In common with many organisations across the country we at Fèisean nan Gàidheal have to find ways to deliver our work in a different format during these challenging times.  We warmly welcome #cleachdiaigantaigh and fully expect to augment the programme to assist young people to use their Gaelic in an online community.” 

CnaG’s Chief executive, Donald MacNeill said: “A key strength of CnaG’s Iomairtean network is the close link between our officers and young people in their own schools and communities. Our focus is always to try and offer fun and engaging activities beyond the classroom, and at a time like this, we’ll try to use those local connections to deliver these same principles of fun and excitement via online platforms.” 

In order to further support parents in their efforts to home school their children in Gaelic Medium Education, a new website ‘Ionnsachadh Dachaigh’ has been launched this week by Stòrlann Nàiseanta Na Gàidhlig.   

More details can be found on their website: 

The #cleachdiaigantaigh programme will be live on Monday 4th May and can be found on the Bòrd na Gàidhlig website: 


‘Victory, Hope & Ambition’ schools project launched to mark 275th anniversary of Battle of Prestonpans

Children aged between 10 and 17 are being invited to take part in a brand new project to mark the 275th anniversary of the Battle of Prestonpans.

Entries in prose, poetry or art and design focusing on the battle will be considered with selected submissions published in a special commemorative book. The project runs from 16th April to 20th December 2020.

Since 1745, the story of the Battle of Prestonpans has fascinated, moved and inspired people from around the world. The dramatic events of the young Bonnie Prince Charlie returning from exile and raising an army of Jacobites to claim the throne and winning against the odds at the Battle of Prestonpans sparked a cultural legacy which continues to this day. The battle is commemorated in songs, poems, novels, paintings and tapestries.

The Battle of Prestonpans (1745) Heritage Trust is a charity that aims to keep this cultural legacy alive. The ‘Victory, Hope & Ambition’ project demonstrates that the creation of new works is just as important as the presentation of the past.

Entries to the project should reflect one of the following key themes:
The prince has landed
A call to arms
On the march
Victory / defeat
Looking back

Entrants are free to explore these areas from any perspective, including those of both Jacobite and Hanoverian supporters. Written contributions should be no more than 500 words. Entrants can work in groups or as individuals and submit through their school or privately.

Entries are welcome in English, Scots or Gaelic. Gaelic language entries should be accompanied by English translations if possible.

Entries will be published on and an event in early 2021 will be held for entrants to celebrate their creativity.

Groups looking for inspiration for entries might welcome a tour of the battlefield at Prestonpans and can find out about this at

Steven Kellow, Project & Funding Officer at Bòrd na Gàidhlig said, “We are delighted to be supporting this project as it fulfils the three primary aims of the National Gaelic Language Plan 2018-23. We hope that our funding will help children from the area engage with the project through the medium Gaelic and we wish the project every success!”

A programme of events is planned to mark the 275th anniversary of the battle of Prestonpans. These will include a tour of The Prestonpans 1745 Tapestry and a special three-month exhibition in Haddington, and a programme of events showcasing the cultural legacy of the battle. This is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, EventScotland, East Lothian Council and Bòrd na Gàidhlig. As fundraising continues towards a living history centre to mark The Battle of Prestonpans, aspects of the centre’s planned activity programmes will be piloted to research the battlefield’s visitor profile and work towards the fundraising goal required to make this dream a reality.

To request an information pack, email or visit

Postal entries should be sent to:
275 Schools Project
Battle of Prestonpans 1745 Heritage Trust
227-229 High Street
EH32 9BE

This project has been designed to fit within a range of school subjects. Here are some examples of where this project may cover the Experiences and Outcomes of curriculum areas: #prestonpans275

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) & GLAIF 2020/21

With the situation relating to COVID-19, we appreciate that this will have an impact on the ability to submit an application for GLAIF 2020/21.

We would like to offer flexibility to organisations so that they can make an application to us.

We’re happy to confirm that we are willing to accept applications after the deadline of Thursday 16 April 2020.

If you are expecting to make an application, but you believe it will not be possible to send a complete application to us before the April deadline – we would appreciate if you could please send information to with:

  • A summary of the project that you will be seeking funding for
  • An idea of the level of funding you will be requesting from GLAIF
  • An idea of the timeline that you would expect for the project

In making funding awards, we will prioritise application as follows:

  • Applications that are received before the deadline (16 April)
  • Applications that are received after the deadline WITH information provided to us beforehand
  • Applications that are received after the deadline WITHOUT information provided to us


Ceistean sam bith?


Cuir fios thugainn aig

Get in touch at


Giglets Gàidhlig is a free-to-schools literacy resource supporting Gaelic Medium Education (GME) pupils in accessing a continuously growing online library of currently nearly 100 Gaelic texts with hundreds of Gaelic resources and 68 Gaelic audio books.

In March 2018, Bòrd na Gàidhlig announced funding for a unique digital Gaelic education project hailed as ‘Netflix for reading’, Giglets Gàidhlig.

Giglets Gàidhlig is an innovative and ground-breaking Gaelic literacy project providing Gaelic texts together with supporting teacher and pupil resources, voice-overs, music, animations and illustrations in a modern, digital and cloud-based way to all GME schools.

The Giglets team have been working to put additional support measures in place following First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s announcement on Wednesday (18/03) to close schools on Friday (20/03).

Jim Whannel, Director of Education at Bòrd na Gàidhlig said:

“The Giglets Gàidhlig resource base provides a wealth of materials that children and young people can use to continue to develop their literacy skills in Gaelic. It is easy to use, comprehensive and designed specifically to meet our immersion needs in Gaelic Medium Education. I would highly recommend this resource base to all our eager Gaelic Medium learners and their families – it’s fun too, with great texts and cartoons and useful backup material to support learning across Early Years, Primary and Secondary GME.

“I’d also like to commend the Giglets team for all their excellent work in continually expanding the resource base and their current focus on supplying our Gaelic-medium learners with high-quality materials which can be adapted for use whilst schools are closed.”

Chairman and Founder of Giglets Dr. Karsten Karcher said:

“The Giglets library of texts and supporting tasks is accessible from home for both teachers and pupils. We understand that continuing to provide high-quality education during these unprecedented times to pupils is of paramount importance. Giglets has implemented additional measures to support home learning and to provide teachers and parents additional assistance during this time.”

Although the Giglets team are based from home now, following Scottish Government advice, the helpdesk remains open for enquiries in both English and Gaelic, and remote trainings are provided to teachers. Teachers and parents can find out more and contact Giglets on

COVID-19: A message from Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s Ceannard

I hope this finds you all safe and well. I appreciate that this is an uncertain and anxious time for us all.

I would like to reiterate Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s commitment to all of our funding partners, volunteer groups, communities and Gaelic speakers and learners alike during this time. We have outlined the work that lies ahead of us below and will provide you with regular updates as we move forward.

Funding Awards

As announced last week, many of the activities funded by Bòrd na Gàidhlig and delivered by partners across the country will be subject to cancellation, alteration or re-scheduling over the coming months.

  • It is important that organisations follow official advice and play their part in delaying the impact of COVID-19.
  • Priority should be given at this time to keeping people and communities safe and ensuring that any additional burden on the NHS in kept to a minimum.
  • The latest advice and information from the Scottish Government can be found here:
  • Funding awards which are affected by following COVID-19 advice will be honoured by Bòrd na Gàidhlig where required and we ask that you keep us up-to-date as your plans change.

Our Staff

Following the Scottish Government’s advice, all staff are working from home until advised this is not necessary. We will be conducting business as usual during this time as far as possible. We will not receive post at this time, please scan any documents to us.

Our Work

During this period, here is information on what Bòrd na Gàidhlig is working on:

  • Managed circulation of information on various resources, via Bòrd na Gàidhlig’s social media channels, that can be used in the home to support young people’s learning at various levels.
  • Developing a signposting facility ‘#cleachdi aig an taigh’ to link the different resources that are available to increase Gaelic usage at home.
  • Working with various partners to make sure that the resources we fund are available to all GME school pupils, with training available online so that families can use them; as well as providing information and tips for parents.
  • Looking to the longer-term, we’ll also be developing an online information resource for schools to highlight Gaelic career opportunities; and exploring what support can be offered online to newly qualified teachers and others instead of events we had planned for the coming months.
  • Working with main funded organisations to create opportunities to use Gaelic outwith formal education activities. These would be at national and local levels.
  • More generally, explore opportunities to support those individuals who are self-employed and work in education, creative and cultural sectors to participate in and deliver activities to increase usage and at the same time, increase their employment opportunities.
  • In addition, we are also in discussion with staff about providing support to other organisations where there is need for cover in GME due to staff illness.

Should you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us. Send your queries to and your message will be forwarded to the relevant person or department.

Cumaibh sàbhailte a chàirdean.

Deagh dhùrachdan,

Shona Niclllinnein

Advice on Bòrd na Gàidhlig funding awards and COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

Many of the activities funded by Bòrd na Gàidhlig and delivered by partners across the country will be subject to cancellation, alteration or re-scheduling over the coming months.


It is important that organisations follow official advice and play their part in delaying the impact of COVID-19.


Funding awards which are impacted as a result of following COVID-19 advice will be honoured where required by Bòrd na Gàidhlig and we ask that you keep us up-to-date as your plans change.


Priority should be given at this time to keeping people and communities safe and ensuring that any additional burden on the NHS in kept to a minimum.

Chair and Member Appointed to Bòrd na Gàidhlig

The Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills, John Swinney, today announced the appointment of Mary MacInnes as Chair and Stewart MacLeod as a Member of the Bòrd na Gàidhlig.



Mary MacInnes has numerous roles within her local community relating to Gaelic language and education spanning early years, primary and adult learning. Mairi, former head teacher of Sgoil an Iochdair, was also a member of the 1+2 Approach to Language Learning Group in the Western Isles.  Mairi is Chair of Ceòlas Uibhist Ltd, the highly acclaimed Gaelic arts organisation. She has also sat on the board of a number of national organisations, such as the Scottish Arts Council and Comataidh Craoladh Gàidhlig. She was a founding member of Cothrom and a founder member and development worker for Fèis Tìr a’ Mhurain.




Stewart MacLeod is from the Isle of Lewis and attended Back School and the Nicolson Institute in Stornoway. He studied English language and Literature at the University of Aberdeen and obtained a PhD researching the minority languages of Scotland – Gaelic and Scots. He is a qualified accountant and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA). His career has centred on public finance: he has worked in international development projects funded by DFID, the World Bank and EU, contributing technical assistance and financial training to government and other public bodies in more than 25 developing countries. He has been a singing member of the Lothian Gaelic Choir since 1998, and has held the office of Gaelic Tutor for the choir since 2018.


Mr Swinney Said:


“I welcome the appointments of Mairi MacInnes as Chair and Stewart MacLeod to the board of Bòrd na Gàidhlig.


“These are important appointments at a challenging time for Bòrd na Gàidhlig and the Scottish Government will continue to work closely with the Chair and Board in driving forward their programme of improvement.


“Mairi brings a wide range of relevant skills from her roles within Gaelic education and extensive experience having served as interim Chair since December 2018. As a qualified accountant Stewart’s varied experience in public finance is a valuable addition to the Board.”




The appointments will be for four years and will run from 16 March 2020 to 15 March 2024.


The appointments are regulated by the Ethical Standards Commissioner.




The appointments are part-time and the Chair attracts a remuneration of £276.94 per day for a time commitment of four days per month. The Member attracts a remuneration of £177.45 per day for a time commitment of three days per month.




Mary MacInnes and Stewart MacLeod do not hold any other public appointments.




All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees’ political activity within the last five years (if there is any to be declared) to be made public.


Mary MacInnes and Stewart MacLeod have had no political activity in the last five years.


Read the report here;

The Glamis consultancy report

The Royal National Mòd 2019

Last year saw another sensational year for Am Mòd Nàiseanta Rìoghail (The Royal National Mòd), with figures boasting a massive £3.2 million generated for Glasgow’s local economy.
A recent economic impact report shows that the nine-day festival, which was held in Glasgow between 11th – 19th October 2019, welcomed over 12,000 people to the city. An outstanding 81% of visitors that came to Glasgow were here to celebrate Scottish culture at the Mòd.
The average visitor to Am Mòd Nàiseanta Rìoghail spent £177 each day while staying in the city, with close to 2/3rd of these stating they would come back to Glasgow again. The figures show a notable year on year growth in the festival’s popularity, with overseas visitors staying in Scotland on average 4.3 nights compared to last year’s 3.2
The report, which was generated by STR & The Glamis Consultancy on behalf of Am Mòd Nàiseanta Rìoghail, further highlights the importance of the festival, not only as part of Scotland’s cultural calendar, but for the city of Glasgow’s tourism numbers.
Organised by An Comunn Gàidhealach, the Mòd is the biggest, and the most important festival of the Gaelic language in Scotland. Each year, it sees thousands of competitors from across the world take part in or watch over 200 competitions in highland dancing, sport, literature and drama, as well as Gaelic music and song.
Glasgow proved to be the perfect host city for the Mòd, showcasing not only it’s incredibly array of performance venues but also the vast range of Gaelic talent that the city has from school level through to professional performers.
President of An Comunn Gàidhealach, Allan Campbell, said: “We are extremely proud of what The Royal National Mòd has achieved this year compared to last. We have seen a higher number of festival attendees, spending habits, and amount generated for the host city – what a fantastic achievement! This is the first time that the festival has been hosted in Glasgow since 1990 and we are ecstatic about the healthy number of individuals that came to the city to celebrate with us. We are looking forward to our 2020 festivities which are taking place in Inverness where we invite you to join us for another year of celebrating Scottish & Gaelic art, music, and literature.”

Bòrd na Gàidhlig is the main funder of An Comunn Gàidhealach and Mòd Nàiseanta Rioghail na h-Alba, and their Ceannard (CEO) Shona MacLennan, said: “We fully recognise the value of the work that An Comunn does in encouraging more people to use Gaelic throughout the year as well as during the Mòd itself. The range and number of participants as well as the those attending the event bear testament to the increasing popularity of Gaelic language and culture, and its contribution to the Scottish economy. We look forward to this year’s event in Inverness where no doubt the Mòd will again provide many opportunities for participants and quality experiences for audiences.”
Councillor David McDonald, Chair of Glasgow Life and Depute Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: “It was a memorable week celebrating the Gaelic language and its culture when the Mod returned to Glasgow for the first time in 30 years. The economic impact is one of the many direct benefits the Mod brings but more importantly it highlights the diverse range of talent from the very young to professional artists performing in Gaelic. We may well be welcoming that talent back to festivals like Celtic Connections in the future and look forward to the role Gaelic can play when Glasgow’s Culture Plan is unveiled in the coming months.”
Andrew Macnair, Head of Marketing, CalMac Ferries Ltd said: CalMac Ferries was delighted to support Am Mòd Nàiseanta Rìoghail again in 2019 in Glasgow. We recognise that it is integral to the Gaelic language and culture and are proud to be part of it.
We look forward to 2020 and will work hard with to all involved to deliver another successful Mòd in Inverness.
D-I Brown, Convenor of Mòd Ghlaschu 2019 said: “The Local Organising Committee (LOC) set out to try and deliver the “best Mod ever” and are delighted that this report vindicates that ambition. Not only did a record number of people attend the 9 day festival, but the LOC made a concerted effort to deliver the first “digital and social Mod” with more content from competitions, the fringe and the general day-to-day events captured and distributed through a well-planned social media strategy. Focussed on engaging young audiences, our social content reached over 12000 people through Facebook, nearly 4000 people on Instagram and #modghlaschu2019 appeared in over 470,000 peoples’ timeline on Twitter.
The LOC organised Fringe events were all well attended, from the Opening George Square party where 600 people partied (in the rain) to Princes Square over-flowing with people on the Sunday evening to listen to Celtic Praise with Soisgeul Choir and later in the week professional singers and performers entertained people at the Glasgow Gold Concert in the Concert Hall. Just a few of the events that took place during the week to delighted audiences. Without doubt, Glasgow has proven to be a perfect choice to stage the Mod and we are confident that that it won’t be another 29 years before the Mod returns to Baile Mòr nan Gaidheal – the City of the Gaels.”

The Royal National Mòd returns this year from October 9th-17th and will be hosted in Inverness.


Details of some of the plans for LUACH, a new Gaelic-medium festival which will take place for the first time on 3rd and 4th April 2020, have been revealed by organisers.
LUACH is being organised by a number of community groups in Lewis and Harris with support from e-Sgoil. Among those taking part will be Dr Alasdair Whyte, Gaelic Ambassador of the Year; Linda MacLeod with ‘Leugh is Seinn le Linda’ (reading and singing sessions for children and their parents); Spòrs Gàidhlig who will be providing outdoor activities, and the festival will be brought to a close by Trail West in Stornoway Town Hall on Saturday 4th April.
Jenna Morrison, CnaG Officer in Harris, explains: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with e-Sgoil and other local groups as part of the LUACH project. It is important that young people get opportunities to use Gaelic outside the school system and in the community, so that they gain confidence in speaking the language in different situations.”
For the inaugural event LUACH will focus on different areas in Lewis and Harris but organisers are already working on plans to stage events in communities throughout the Western Isles in 2021.
LUACH has received support from Bòrd na Gàidhlig, the Scottish Government, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar and An Lanntair as well as community groups such as Galson Estate Trust, Bragar and Arnol Community Trust and Comann Eachdraidh Sgìre a’ Bhac.
Shona MacLennan, CEO of Bòrd na Gàidhlig, said:
“LUACH will contribute to the main aim of the National Gaelic Language Plan: that Gaelic is used more often, by more people in a wider range of situation. We wish the festival organisers every success with their programme of events which will be very attractive to Gaelic-speakers in the islands and from across the country.”
Further information can be found on Facebook @LUACHnaGaidhlig, by contacting groups involved or emailing