THE number of people speaking Gaelic needs to increase by up to 860 a year to halt the decline in the language, according to a new report. The research, published in a Royal Society journal, found the language was in danger of extinction because of the domination of English in everyday lives.
It suggests copying initiatives used to protect and develop Welsh which has been affected less by the historic "language shift" where one language is abandoned in favour of another. The report says that during the 20th century, Welsh remained widely spoken despite long-term pressures for people to speak English. However, since the 1970s there has been a vigorous programme to revitalise the Welsh language.
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