Agenda and minutes

Language Committee - Monday, 5th December, 2022 10.00 am

Venue: Hybrid - Neuadd Cyngor Ceredigion, Penmorfa, Aberaeron / remotely via video conference

No. Item




i.      Councillors Rhodri Davies and John Roberts apologised for their inability to attend the meeting.

ii.     Lowri Edwards, Corporate Lead Officer: Democratic Services apologised for her inability to attend the meeting due to being on other duties on behalf of the Council.


Disclosure of personal/ prejudicial interests


There were no disclosures of personal/ prejudicial interests. <AI4>


To confirm as a true record the minutes of a meeting of the Language Committee held on 13 June 2022 pdf icon PDF 87 KB


It was RESOLVED to confirm as a true record the minutes of the meeting held on 13 June 2022.


Any matters arising from the minutes




The Assessment of Local Well-being- main findings of the Welsh Language & Census 2021:


A presentation was provided to the committee focusing on the key findings that emerged from the Assessment of Local Well-being in relation to the Welsh language and 2021 Census Topic Summaries. The following was outlined:

  • Cymraeg 2050: A million Welsh speakers & Ceredigion’s Target
  • Context (data on Welsh speakers in Ceredigion in 1991 Vs 2001 Vs 2011)
  • The Five Life Stages Approach adopted by the West Wales Public Services Boards (New Beginnings, Childhood, Youth, Adulthood, Older People)
  • Census 2021 & Topic Summaries
  • Population Change: Ceredigion (2001-2043)
  • Demography & Migration
  • Next Steps


It was highlighted that the Welsh Language topic summary from the Census held on 21 March 2021 was due to be released tomorrow (6 December 2022). The Welsh Language Report will be used as an evidence-base to inform the development of the new Welsh Language Strategy in the new year.


The following points were raised following the presentation: 

  • In the 2021 Census, students studying in the County are included within Ceredigion’s usual resident population (similar to the 2011 Census). However, there is a possibility of a student undercount as many lived at home (away from Ceredigion) when the Census was undertaken due to COVID-19 restrictions. Further data will be released in January which will provide further insight into this issue.
  • The important relationship between dementia and bilingualism as individuals revert to their first language; work was ongoing on dementia service provision in the county.
  • Importance of the 2021 Census Welsh Language results to the Council’s consultation on post-16 education provision.
  • Measuring the use of the Welsh language was very difficult when collecting data. Questions on the use of the Welsh language vary in surveys by Office for National Statistics and Census.
  • More detailed Census 2021 results would be published in due course.


Following questions from the floor, it was AGREED to arrange a workshop specifically around the Census results in due course.


Welsh Language Policy for Awarding Grants in accordance with Standard 94 pdf icon PDF 549 KB


It was noted that in accordance with the Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011, the Welsh Language Commissioner has set a range of Welsh Language Standards, which contains a very detailed list of requirements that set out how Ceredigion must use and promote the Welsh language in both the workplace and in its dealings with the Public. This, to provide quality Welsh language services; ensuring the Welsh language is not treated any less favourably than the English language. In line with this, the Welsh Language Standard 94 requires the Council to develop and publish a Welsh Language Policy on Awarding Grants. The purpose of the policy is to assist officers in ensuring that Welsh Language Standards considerations are an integrated element of the grant process across the Council, and ensuring that Officers assess the impact of awarding grants on the Welsh language.


Following questions from the floor, it was AGREED to receive the policy and recommend submitting the Policy to Cabinet for approval.


Key Points from the Welsh Language Commissioner's Assurance report: 'The Welsh language as a way of working' 2021-22 pdf icon PDF 152 KB


Consideration was given to the Welsh Language Commissioner’s Assurance report, published yearly, which provided the Commissioner's views on the way organisations, including Local Authorities, implement the statutory requirements of the Welsh Language Standards. An overview of the key findings was provided along with the main issues Ceredigion County Council need to give further consideration, to ensure compliance with the Welsh Language Standards as outlined below: 

1.    Policy Making Standards: A Requirement to Assess the Impact on the Welsh Language

2.    Operational Standards: Recruitment and Advertising

3.    Key Services: Direct Calling

4.    Promoting Welsh Language Services

5.    The effect of service shortcomings on Welsh language users

6.    Next Steps


All Corporate Lead Officers will be asked to complete a Welsh Language Standards Performance Assessment, in order to evaluate compliance with aspects of the Standards in January 2023.


Following questions from the floor, it was AGREED to support the actions outlined in the report.


Questionnaire by the Welsh Language Commissioner: Current practices of public organisations in terms of promoting Welsh language services, and the data that exists on the use of Welsh language services (October 2022) pdf icon PDF 231 KB


The Language Officer reported that there was regular contact with the Welsh Language Commissioner regarding Ceredigion County Council’s compliance with the requirements of the Welsh Language Standards. The most recent questionnaire was sent to all local authorities in October regarding arrangements to Promote Welsh-language Service. It was highlighted that collating data to measure the use of the Welsh language can be difficult. More work is being undertaken to understand what data can be meaningful in terms of language use, and the Local Authority will work with the Welsh Language Commissioner as this work is being developed.


Following consideration, it was AGREED to receive the evidence, which was submitted to the Welsh Language Commissioner in October 2022.


Encourage the use of Welsh at Democratic Meetings in accordance with the requirements of the Welsh Language Standards (Standards 30-40) pdf icon PDF 234 KB


An overview of the report was provided. The Language Officer explained that the Welsh Language Standards (Standards 30-40) had been implemented by Ceredigion County Council since 2016 following consultation with the Welsh Language Commissioner. An element that required further attention was to encourage the use of Welsh within Democratic Meetings. In response, the Council has developed a guide on chairing and holding bilingual public meetings, including a list of useful terminology, which is available on CeriNet for all Councillors.


The Chair noted that the Welsh Language needed to be as visible as possible in meetings, in order to encourage more people to use the language.


Following consideration, it was AGREED to receive the report.


Shwmae Day: Celebrating Welsh Learner of the Year pdf icon PDF 235 KB


The Language Officer explained that Shwmae Day aims to be a special national day for promoting and facilitating the use of Welsh. This year, Ceredigion County Council used the day to celebrate the achievements of Melisa Elek, who passed her advanced-level Welsh exam in the Summer of 2022 and was awarded Ceredigion’s Welsh Learner of the Year. It was highlighted that Ceredigion’s Work Welsh scheme ran in partnership with the National Centre for Learning Welsh and a variety of courses was offered by Huw Owen, the authority’s Work Welsh Training Officer.


Congratulations were extended to Melisa Elek on her success.


Welsh Language Commissioner's Rights Day: 7th December


It was noted the Welsh Language Measure was passed by Parliament on 7 December 2011. The purpose of the day was for public organisations to promote the availability of Welsh language services to the public and to encourage their use. Ceredigion County Council has created a video focusing on this which will be shared on social media. Internally, a Welsh ‘word of the day’ campaign which began during the Fifa World Cup 2022 will run until Christmas. 


Welsh Government Consultation- The Future of Welsh-speaking Communities (closing date 13 January 2023):


The Language Officer noted that a Members’ Panel had been arranged for 5 January 2023 to consider the consultation. A draft response would be circulated to members in due course once evidence had been collated.


Any other matter which the Chairman decides is for the urgent attention of the Committee