Wednesday 31 October 2012

Failure of Certificate of Irish Heritage

Another one from the Irish Times, this time on the Certificate of Irish Heritage ( Jennifer O' Connell's article is at and looks at what she considers to be an embarrassment, with only 1042 people applying for a certificate in its first year - or 0.00167 per cent of Ireland's 60 million diaspora. I can only agree, and I had to laugh at the caption under the photo of a certificate with the piece: "This hereby certifies that the bearer is not British" :)

The writer takes to the theme about there being nothing special about "being Irish", and cites the failure of the certificate as evidence that no-one around the world is interested - however, she also applies this to the prospects for The Gathering event next year ( On that I would perhaps part ways with her analysis. A worthless bit of paper simply designed to cynically raise money by exploiting a diaspora is not quite the same thing as organising a national hooley to re-establish connections with that diaspora. So on the Certificate of Irish Heritage, I've always had my thumbs down on that one - but on The Gathering, I'm going to wish that one the best of luck!


Scotland 1750-1850 - 5 weeks online Pharos course, £45.99, taught by Chris Paton from 2 NOV 2012 - see
New book: It's Perthshire 1866 - there's been a murder... (from June 12th 2012)

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