SCOTTISH Borders Council is to revive and promote the use of the Gaelic language within the local authority and across the region.

When the full council meets next week they will be asked to agree that the local authority’s proposed Gaelic Language Plan be forwarded to Bòrd na Gàidhlig for its agreement in accordance with the Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005.

The plan proposes to increase the use of Gaelic within the council and encourage more people to use Gaelic when they interact with council officials.

Secondly, it proposes to increase the opportunities for people to learn Gaelic as part of the authority’s day-to-day operations and to “promote a positive image of Gaelic whenever we can as part of our day-to-day operations as an organisation”.

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A report from Lesley Munro, the council’s director of education and lifelong learning, to be presented to a meeting of full council on Thursday, June 29, says: “To ensure that the Gaelic Language Plan is embedded across the corporate structure of the local authority, it is recommended the establishment of a Gaelic Language Plan implementation and monitoring group, consisting of staff from across the local authority with responsibility for developing, implementing and monitoring different aspects of the plan.

“The group will be responsible for monitoring the Gaelic Language Plan and ensuring the actions are implemented. The group will meet a minimum of twice a year (more if required)."

The Gaelic language's origins can be traced back as far as the 10th century and it is believed to have been brought to Scotland by way of Ireland.

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From these beginnings, Gaelic spread throughout the country, becoming the main language of the medieval kingdom of Alba and remained that way right through to the 18th century.

However, with dwindling numbers of Gaelic speakers there have been initiatives in recent years to revitalise the language in Scotland.

The 2011 census indicated that 57,375 people spoke Gaelic and 87,100 said they had some Gaelic skills.

More than 1.5 million people identified themselves as Scots speakers.