Full steam ahead for Raidió Fáilte’s new broadcast hub

Fergus Ó hír, Clara Ní Ghiolla, Ciarán Mag Uidhir and Edel Ní Churraoin examine the Raidió Fáilte new-build plans Fergus Ó hír, Clara Ní Ghiolla, Ciarán Mag Uidhir and Edel Ní Churraoin examine the Raidió Fáilte new-build plans
Patrick McDonnell (left) moved to North Carolina in 2011 while Jim Campbell had made his home in Downpatrick Patrick McDonnell (left) moved to North Carolina in 2011 while Jim Campbell had made his home in Downpatrick
By Brónach Ní Thuama

CULTURE Minister Carál Ní Chuilín has welcomed the submission of a planning application for a new Irish language facility in Divis Street

Raidió Fáilte has lodged the application for a new build broadcast, recording, training and Irish language archive centre.

The project, entitled ‘Líonra Uladh’ will provide modern facilities for Raidió Fáilte and enhanced community training opportunities.

The Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure is providing £460,000 towards the project which will offer enhanced facilities for visitors and space for nurturing and developing Irish language-based creative and cultural opportunities.

Speaking about the planned development, the Minister said: “This is an excellent day for the Irish language in Belfast. When completed, this new centre will greatly help Raidió Fáilte to further establish and develop an Irish language facility that will also act as a cultural hub for the entire local community and a catalyst for the regeneration of the surrounding area.

“Learning and everyday usage of Irish is on the increase right across Ireland and nowhere more so than in Belfast’s own Gaeltacht Quarter.

“I am very pleased that my Department is funding this worthwhile venture and my thanks go to co-funders Belfast City Council and Ciste Infheistíochta Gaeilge, along with the Housing Executive and the Department for Regional Development who are providing the land through community asset transfers. I welcome the broader community benefits of the project and particularly commend the proposals to incorporate culture based enterprises in the complex. I look forward to seeing the project coming to fruition.”

Station manager Fergus Ó hÍr said he was very hopeful that work on the new building will happen in he near future.

“Our new broadcast centre will have station studios, major training facilities, a recording studio, public space, an archive of Irish language recorded material as well as a meeting space.

“The building will be a major facility for the area. We see it very much as the start of the Gaeltacht Quarter with it being visible from the city centre. It’ll be a major symbol for the Irish language and culture, a welcoming beacon to the great delights of what the Gaeltacht Quarter has to offer our visitors and tourists.

“We are very much looking forward to having our new building,” he added.

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