Sunday, January 19, 2020
The skye times mobile
Donnie (right) with Alex Salmond and Kate Forbes

Talks have been underway to ensure an irreplaceable Scottish language resource – which has its roots on Skye - is not threatened for future generations to share and enjoy.

Skye’s Donnie Munro, chair of the Tobar an Dualchais/Kist o Riches archive had a meeting with local MSP Kate Forbes and former SNP leader, Alex Salmond – now a Westminister MP – to discuss how the invaluable resource can be not only preserved but allowed to expand in the years to come.

Originally £100,000 of Scottish Government funding was used to set up the £3m archive which was launched back in 2010.  Donnie who has been chairman since its inception described how the new website would open up Scotland's past as never before.

He said: "This is the most ambitious cultural digital heritage project anywhere in Europe, if not the world.

"A visit to the website will be like talking to those who walked, talked, lived and worked decades ago.

"You will hear the real voices of mill workers, fishermen, crofters, travellers and farm workers talking in their own language, be that Gaelic, Doric, Scots or the rich dialect of the Northern Isles."

Although not in any immediate danger the Kate, the newly elected MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch, speaking on social media said:  “We were just discussing how we can make sure it doesn't come under threat and that there's funding and plans to take it through the next decade”.

 In fact the Tobar an Dualchais/Kist o Riches website contains over 36,000 oral recordings made in Scotland and further afield, from the 1930s onwards. Items available to listen to include stories, songs, music, poetry and factual information

The collaborative project was set up to preserve, digitise, catalogue and make available online several thousand hours of Gaelic and Scots recordings. It contains a wealth of material such as folklore, songs, music, history, poetry, traditions, stories and other information.

A visit to the website means modern day listeners can hear those who walked, talked, lived and worked decades ago. They include the real voices of mill workers, fishermen, and farm workers talking in their own languages.

The project, has created a real 'living heritage' resource, accessible to all at the press of a button and has been made possible, through a partnership involving the School of Scottish Studies, the BBC, the National Trust for Scotland and managed through Sabhal Mr Ostaig, the National Centre for Gaelic Language and culture on Skye.

If you want to listen and find out for yourself what the website has to offer then follow the link here

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