Northern Ireland Assembly Flax Flower Logo


12 March 2009

PN: CAL 04/08/09


Townland names such as Cappagh Beg, Crossreagh East and Mullaghacall South are an important part of local heritage. That’s what the Committee for Culture, Arts and Leisure said at their meeting today in the Flowerfield Arts Centre in Portstewart.

The meeting, part of the Committee’s weekly meeting programme, discussed a research paper on townland names and considered responses from a number of councils on the issue.

Speaking after the meeting, Acting Committee Chairperson Raymond McCartney MLA said, “Townland names are a very important part of our history and local cultural heritage. It’s imperative that we do not loose this vital link with our past.

“I would urge Councils and departments to promote their use.”

The Committee also considered written evidence submitted for their inquiry into the funding of arts in Northern Ireland and discussed the Minister’s decision on the multi-sports stadium.

Commenting on the inquiry into funding for the arts, Acting Committee Chairperson Raymond McCartney MLA said, “We have a long and distinguished history of producing great arts and artists and we must continue to fund them. In the face of our present economic difficulties, the arts can and do play an important role in encouraging tourism and bringing people here.

“It is therefore vital that we get our arts funding right; that the funding contributes to a vibrant and inclusive arts scene—one that contributes to our economy and society as a whole.”


Note to Editor

The Chairperson of the Committee is Mr Barry McElduff MLA.
The Deputy Chairperson is Mr David McNarry MLA

The Committee has a further nine members:
Mr Dominic Bradley MLA
Mr Francie Brolly MLA
The Lord Browne MLA
Mr Kieran McCarthy MLA
Mr Raymond McCartney MLA
Mr Nelson McCausland MLA
Mr Pat Ramsey MLA
Mr Ken Robinson MLA
Mr Jim Shannon MLA

The Committee for Culture, Arts and Leisure is a Statutory Departmental Committee which has a scrutiny, policy development and consultation role with respect to the Minister of Culture, Arts and Leisure and has a role in the initiation of legislation.

The Committee has the power to:

The Committee’s is currently considering the following key issues as part of its forward work programme:

The Clerk to the Committee is – Kathryn Bell
Committee Office
Northern Ireland Assembly
Room 424 Parliament Buildings
Telephone: 028 90 521841
Fax: 028 90 521355
E Mail:

For further information contact Ms Debra Savage, Northern Ireland Assembly, Press Office, Room B2, Parliament Buildings, Belfast, BT4 3XX
Telephone – 028 90 521405
Mobile: 07920 864221
Email –