Clare Moody

MEP for the South West and Gibraltar

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Cornish language could fade into obscurity

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There are fears the Cornish language could fade into obscurity, as the organisation that promotes it faces closure. 

The Government has said it will not fund the Cornish Language Partnership or MAGA beyond the current programme which ends on 31 March. 

The organisation was set up in 2005 to promote and develop the Cornish language. 

It works in partnership with Cornwall Council and local schools. 

In a statement Cornwall Council said:

"We have written to the government to express our concerns about this situation and have confirmed that unless funding can be identified we will be forced to close the MAGA office. 

"We are currently in negotiation with the Government on this matter and expect a response imminently. 

"As a consequence of this funding uncertainty, staff in the Cornish Language team are currently in a process of consultation around the future of their posts but we have tried to wait until the last possible moment to take further action." 

Claire Moody, South West Labour MEP said:

"Last year the Cornish were finally conferred national minority status, a move that extends to Cornwall those rights enjoyed by other minority nations, and should ensure the preservation and development of Cornwall’s rich and unique cultural heritage for years to come. 

"But that status is worth little if provision is not made for the Cornish to realise those rights - which is why this funding is so important. The Cornish language is a vital part of Cornwall's heritage and it's very important that we preserve and encourage it. 

"Without this funding right now, there's an uncertain future for it, and if a language is lost that's it; you can't resurrect it without a huge amount of effort." 

This time last year Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg announced that the Cornish Language Partnership was set to receive £120,000 in funding to "keep the language alive". 

The Cornish dialect was named last year as one of 24 European languages in danger of dying out.

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