Today the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Rt Hon Brandon Lewis MP, has announced £2 million in funding to Northern Ireland Screen’s Irish Language and Ulster Scots Broadcast Funds.
The funds provide support for the Irish language and Ulster Scots production sectors and a range of film, television and radio programming. This £2m in support from the UK Government will also enable the development of a range of new educational, interactive and digital content.
This announcement marks the fulfillment of a UK Government commitment in the New Decade, New Approach agreement that was agreed in January 2020 and saw the restoration of the Northern Ireland Executive.
The funding also reflects the UK Government’s steadfast commitment to the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement, which sets out the importance of respect, understanding and tolerance for linguistic diversity across Northern Ireland, including the Irish language and Ulster Scots.
The £2 million in funding to Northern Ireland Screen was provided through the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and the British Film Institute, and will be split equally between both funds.
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Brandon Lewis, said:
“The UK Government celebrates Northern Ireland’s rich tapestry of languages, identities and cultures, and believes that the United Kingdom’s strength lies in its diversity.
“Today, I am delighted to announce £2 million in funding for the Irish language and Ulster Scots broadcasting funds, supporting a host of exciting new programmes for people across Northern Ireland.
“This announcement demonstrates we are continuing to deliver on our New Decade New Approach commitments and supporting the Irish language and Ulster Scots communities.”
This support is provided on a one-off basis as a boost for both funds, reflecting their widened remit.
In accordance with the funding proposals, Northern Ireland Screen are distributing these monies in the 2020/21 and 2021/22 financial years.