Teams from Shawbost, Daliburgh, Portree, Inverness, Acharacle and Mount Cameron, East Kilbride schools will be competing in the Finals of this year’s Cuach na Cloinne competition, after winning their respective regional competitions.

For the past couple of weeks, 50 teams from 28 schools across Scotland have been participating in regional competitions in Lewis, Uist, Skye, Inverness, Ardnamurchan and Glasgow resulting in the six successful teams qualifying for the national Finals which will be held next month.  The Finals will be held at Bunsgoil Ghàidhlig Loch Abair on 7th June.

Cuach na Cloinne is a national football competition, which creates an opportunity for young people from schools across Scotland who attend Gaelic Medium Education to meet and compete against each other and combines their Gaelic linguistic and footballing skills in an inclusive and entertaining manner. The competition is held entirely in Gaelic.

Donald MacNeill, Ceannard of Comunn na Gàidhlig, who organise the competition said, “It is an absolute joy to see so many young people playing with and against each other in events which they are obviously enjoying. It is also a matter of great encouragement to see the numbers participating increasing year on year. We had more teams taking part in this year’s competition than ever before. I want to record my gratitude to the sponsors of Cuach na Cloinne, without whose assistance the competition wouldn’t happen. They are Bòrd na Gàidhlig, Comhairle nan Eilean and The Highland Council.  I also want to send my best wishes to the six teams taking part in the Finals of Cuach na Cloinne 2016.”

Councillor John A Maciver, Chair of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar’s Gaelic Plan Implementation Committee said, “Comhairle nan Eilean Siar is delighted to support Cuach na Cloinne. Not only is it important with regards to developing linguistic skills, it is also very important from a sport perspective, that young people from the islands are given opportunities to play with and against their peers from across Scotland. We wish to congratulate Shawbost and Daliburgh Primary Schools on their successes in the regional competitions and wish them all the best in the forthcoming Finals.”

Councillor Hamish Fraser said, “The Highland Council are pleased to support the event, Cuach na Cloinne is a very well established national Gaelic event on the youth sporting Gaelic circuit.  I’m delighted that the event is so successful and creating a tournament which is held entirely in Gaelic supports and enhances the young people’s learning experience beyond the class room. It also provides an excellent opportunity for young people to use their linguistic skills through extra-curricular activities. I wish all the teams every success and look forward to the Final taking place at the new Bunsgoil Ghàidhlig Loch Abair, which was officially opened at the beginning of March”.

Bòrd na Gàidhlig interim CEO, Bruce Robertson said: “Bòrd na Gàidhlig is once again pleased to help fund this initiative. Not only does the competition give the children a healthy sporting competition to take part in, but it also provides them with an opportunity to meet up with other Gaelic-speaking children from across the country.   It is so important that Gaelic speaking children have opportunities to use their language outwith the classroom and Cuach na Cloinne certainly gives them that opportunity.”

Cuach na Cloinne 2016 is funded by Bòrd na Gàidhlig, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar and The Highland Council and organised by Comunn na Gàidhlig.