Language Policy

, Volume 5, Issue 2, pp 141–160 | Cite as


  • Catrin Fflur HuwsEmail author


The Welsh Language Act 1993 is now 12 years old. Accordingly, the time is ripe to measure its success in terms of facilitating the use of the Welsh language in the courts. This can be measured in a number of different ways. Firstly, it is possible to measure its success by contextualising the Act within what is achievable and desirable on an international level and by comparing Wales with other similar jurisdictions. Secondly, it is possible to consider whether the Act has succeeded in fulfilling its own objectives, by comparing the substantive sections of the statute with its long title and whether and how the practices of the institutions accord with the objectives of the statute. Within this context, it is also possible to identify aspects omitted from the Welsh Language Act 1993 that have an impact upon linguistic behaviour in the courts.

Key words:

bilingualism celtic languages courts legal bilingualism legislation Welsh language act 1993 Welsh language schemes 



children and family court advisory and support service


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Act of Union 36 27 Hen VIII c.26Google Scholar
  2. Andrews J. A., Henshaw L. G. (1984) Welsh in the courts. Faculty of Law University College of Wales Aberystwyth, AberystwythGoogle Scholar
  3. Berk-Seligson S. (1990) The bilingual courtroom: court interpreters in the judicial process. Chicago University Press, Chicago and LondonGoogle Scholar
  4. Bohane, K. (2005). The Official Languages Act 2003. [2005] VIII C.O.L.R. Available at Retrieved October 3rd, 2005Google Scholar
  5. Broadcasting Act 1981 (1981 c.68). United KingdomGoogle Scholar
  6. Bunreacht na hEireann [Constitution of Ireland] 1937 IrelandGoogle Scholar
  7. Dunbar, Robert (2000). Implications of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages for British Linguistic Minorities (2000) 25 E.L Rev. HR pp. 46–69Google Scholar
  8. Education Reform Act 1988 (1988 c.40) United KingdomGoogle Scholar
  9. Education (National Curriculum) (Attainment Targets and Programmes of Study in Welsh) Order 1990 (SI 1082)Google Scholar
  10. Education (National Curriculum) (Attainment Targets and Programmes of Study in Welsh) Order 1991 (SI 1683)Google Scholar
  11. Education (National Curriculum) (Exceptions in Welsh at Key Stage 4) Regulations 1994 (SI 1270)Google Scholar
  12. European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages 1992. ETS No 148Google Scholar
  13. European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms 1950Google Scholar
  14. Evans W. G. (2000) The British State and Welsh Language Education in Wales. In: Jenkins G. H. (ed) The Welsh language and its social domains 1801–1911. University of Wales Press, Cardiff pp 483–504Google Scholar
  15. Gaelic Language Act 2005 (asp7) United KingdomGoogle Scholar
  16. Government of Wales Act 1998 (c38) United KingdomGoogle Scholar
  17. Groener v Minister for Education and the City of Dublin Vocational Educational Committee (C-379/87) [1989] E.C.R. 3967Google Scholar
  18. Hansard (1966–1967) HL. Vol. 284 Col 82–86. June 27th, 1967Google Scholar
  19. Heath, Rachel (2001). Language, culture and markers in further education. PhD Thesis. Cardiff UniversityGoogle Scholar
  20. Her Majesty’s Courts Service (2005a) Retrieved September 23rd, 2005Google Scholar
  21. Her Majesty’s Courts Service (2005b) Welsh Language Scheme prepared under the Welsh Language Act 1993Google Scholar
  22. International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 1966Google Scholar
  23. Juries Act 1974 (c23)Google Scholar
  24. Lewis R. (1969) Second class citizen. Gwasg Gomer, LlandysulGoogle Scholar
  25. Lord Chancellor’s Department Standing Committee on the Welsh Language (2000) Adroddiad yr Is-Bwyllgor ar fater rheolau llys o dan adrannau 22–24 Deddf yr Iaith Gymraeg 1993Google Scholar
  26. Lord Chancellor’s Department Standing Committee on the Welsh Language (2002) A report of the criminal justice sub-committee on the use of the Welsh Language in the Criminal Justice System in WalesGoogle Scholar
  27. Miller v DPP (2004). WL 852212Google Scholar
  28. Official Languages Act 2003 (No 32 of 2003) IrelandGoogle Scholar
  29. Parry R. G. (2001) Hyrwyddo’r Gymraeg ym myd y Gyfraith: beth yw cyfraniad Adrannau Cyfraith y Brifysgol? [Promoting the Welsh Language within the Law: What is the role of the University’s Law Departments?]. Wales Law Journal 1(4): 387–395Google Scholar
  30. Parry, R. Gwynedd (2002). Random selection, linguistic rights and the jury trial in Wales. [2002] Criminal Law Review 805–816Google Scholar
  31. Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (c.60) United KingdomGoogle Scholar
  32. Prujiner Alain (1989) Les Enjeux Politiques De L’Intervention Juridique En Matière Linguistique [Political Issues Relating to Judicial Intervention in Linguistic Matters]. In: Pupier P., Woehrling J. (eds) Langue et Droit/Language and Law: Proceedings of the first conference of the International Institute of Comparative Linguistic Law. Wilson & LaFleur, Montreal, pp 103–115Google Scholar
  33. Welsh Language Act 1967 (c66). United KingdomGoogle Scholar
  34. Welsh Language Act 1993 (c38). United KingdomGoogle Scholar
  35. Welsh Language Board (2000). Status of the Welsh Language Research Report. Site available September 23rd, 2005Google Scholar
  36. Williams v Cowell [2000] 1 WLR 187Google Scholar
  37. Williams G., Morris D. (2000) Language policy and language planning: welsh in a global age. University of Wales Press, CardiffGoogle Scholar
  38. Woehrling J.-M. (1989) La Promotion des langues régionales et minoritaires dans le projet de charte du Conseil de l’Europe [The Promotion of Minority and Regional Languages in the Council of Europe’s Proposed Charter]. In: Pupier P., Woehrling J. (eds) Langue et Droit/Language and Law. Wilson & LaFleur, Montreal pp 133–182Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Adran y Gyfraith, Adeilad Hugh Owen, Prifysgol Cymru Aberystwyth, Penglais, Aberystwyth, CeredigionCymru/WalesUnited Kingdom

Personalised recommendations