Booklet helps keep Gaelic place names alive

A new bilingual booklet has been created by Scottish Natural Heritage that features 300 Eriskay place-names.

This booklet is a Gaelic and English guide produced in collaboration with Ainmean-Àite na h-Alba, the national advisory partnership for Gaelic place-names in Scotland, and Ceòlas, one of Scotland’s leading Gaelic culture, heritage and arts organisations.

The place-names collected for the booklet largely relate to the coast, waters and stories of the islands and what’s more is that many of the names have never been printed before.

Robyn Ireland, Scottish Natural Heritage’s Gaelic officer said: ‘We’re thrilled to be publishing our seventh title in the Gaelic in the Landscape series. The booklet is a celebration of people’s inseparable link to our natural heritage through language.’

The booklet will hopefully not only encourage discussions about Eriskay but also help to preserve the Gaelic language.

Eilidh Scammell of AÀA said: ‘We are delighted to have been part of this project, helping preserve these names for the future generations of Eriskay. The preservation of Scotland’s Gaelic place-names and understanding the connections between the language and the land is very much at the heart of AÀA.’

Liam Crouse, Gaelic media and communications officer at Ceòlas said: ‘Eriskay remains a Gaelic-speaking island, which has led to the retention of a great number of place-names. If place-names are not used, or have no use, they are forgotten. The place-names of Eriskay clearly continue to have relevance to the island’s population.’

The booklet was launched as part of Ceòlas’ summer school programme of community events.

It can be downloaded from the Scottish Natural Heritage’s website and a limited number of printed copies are available from