Tipperary’s Irish speakers aim to set new record

A group of Tipperary gaelgoirs are hoping to set a new 21st century record as part of Seachtain na Gaeilge next week when they hope to get as many Irish speakers chatting ‘as gaeilge’ as possible in Thurles on March 7.

The organisation behind this event is the Thurles based ‘Irish Coffee group’, – a group of Irish speakers who have been meeting weekly in the town for the past four years.

They are now looking to get as many people as possible to meet in the Bookworm bookshop and cafe on Liberty Square between 11am and 12 noon for a ‘cupla focal’ and a cup of coffee in a bid to set a new record attempt for most Irish speakers chatting at once in Thurles to coincide with Seachtain na Gaeilge.

The group was originally set up in 2013 by Eamonn Sheppard and his daughter as a way of encouraging people to keep the Irish language alive and as a meeting point for local Irish speakers. Today the Thurles Irish Coffee Group now count 60 members on its books with up to 20 members attending the group chat on a weekly basis. Since it’s inception several spin off groups have also been inspired by the Thurles gaelgoirs with similar groups popping up in Mallow and Dublin.

However for those who feel their level of Irish may not be up to scratch, Eamonn says they shouldn’t feel dissuaded from joining in as the group welcome the “fluent gaelgoiri to beginners and everyone in between.”

“It’s an informal meeting, very casual and fun. There’s no pressure or obligation to use perfect Irish. It’s all about trying and just giving it a go. We help everyone along and there’s no such thing as correcting others for not being perfect.”

“We notice that those who regularly attend improve their level of fluency very quickly and its a good social outing as well as you get to meet a lot of people you probably wouldn’t on a day to day basis,” he says.

To learn more about the Irish Coffee Morning group or to get involved with the record attempt on March 7 call Eamonn on 086 3264275

So what are you waiting for? Cabhraight linn curiarracht a dheanamh!

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By:niamh Dillon

Email:niamh.dillon@tipperarystar.ie

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