Council Accused of 'Total Disregard' for Language; 'DISCOVER CARMARTHENSHIRE' WEBSITE WRITTEN IN ENGLISH ONLY

Article excerpt

Byline: RACHAEL MISSTEAR

ITS county town lays claim to being the oldest in Wales - but its local authority has been accused of failing the Welsh language after writing its tourism website in English only.

Discover Carmarthenshire is produced and maintained by the council's marketing division and advertised as the county's official tourist information website.

But Plaid Cymru have criticised the authority for a "complete disregard for the Welsh language". The party also claimed the site was "completely at odds with the authority's recently adopted Welsh Language Scheme".

In a joint statement, Jonathan Edwards MP and AM Rhodri Glyn Thomas said: "The Discover Carmarthenshire website is a great initiative to promote the many wonderful things about our county. "Nonetheless, we are extremely disappointed that the council has completely ignored the Welsh language.

"The move flies in the face of the recently promoted Welsh Language Scheme in which the county council said it would treat Welsh and English equally.

"The council must explain who authorised the website to be published in English only, and must ensure that such total disregard for the language is never allowed to happen again."

A council spokesman said: "The Welsh language is extremely important to the work we do in tourism and marketing.

"We give hints and tips to visitors on our website, as an understanding of the language makes a trip more enjoyable."

The spokesman added that the council has produced 75,000 bilingual What's On guides, which had been distributed across South Wales.

"Progress has also been made with our Welsh language adviser and we do aim to have a condensed version of discovercarmarthenshire.

com available shortly.

"The tourism and marketing team will be working closely with the corporate policy team and with local tourism operators to highlight the potential that cultural and linguistic tourism holds and to ensure that the high levels of visitors from Wales are maintained. …