Record num­bers flock to an­nual sum­mer school

The Oban Times - - DISTRICT NEWS -

A record num­ber of stu­dents flocked to South Uist for a week ear­lier this month to ad­vance their Gaelic mu­sic, dance and lan­guage skills.

The is­land com­mu­nity wel­comed 181 at­ten­dees of the 23rd an­nual Ceòlas sum­mer school from across the world, shat­ter­ing the pre­vi­ous high­est at­ten­dance reg­is­tered at last year’s school.

Over the past decade, the week­long event has wit­nessed growth of around 80 per cent, in line with the tar­gets set within the Cnoc Soilleir busi­ness case.

Gaelic lan­guage cour­ses, which have grown to rep­re­sent the largest stu­dent seg­ment, have more than dou­bled in size, with new Gaelic-medium and flu­ent classes ex­pe­ri­enc­ing high-lev­els of in­ter­est. Ac­cord­ing to data col­lected dur­ing feed­back, the to­tal stu­dent spend pro­vided a boost of more than £210,000 to the lo­cal econ­omy, which is in­creased fur­ther through the spend of ad­di­tional fam­ily and friends who also jour­neyed to Uist for the week.

Ceòlas would like to thank all those who made the school pos­si­ble, from the vol­un­tary board and com­mit­tee, the can­teen staff, those who do­nated raf­fle prizes, to those who hosted house cèilidhs and helped with the run­ning of the week.

Ceòlas would also like to thank its fun­ders, in­clud­ing Bòrd na Gàidhlig, High­lands and Is­lands En­ter­prise, Cre­ative Scot­land and Comhairle nan Eilean Siar.

Mary Sch­moller talk­ing about pla­ce­names dur­ing the Eriskay pla­ce­names book launch.

Ceòlas sum­mer school’s wel­come cèilidh was packed.

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