02/11/17

Intangible Cultural Heritage

National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Ireland

Expression of Interest Form – Download here

Open Call – National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage

The nationwide call for submissions to Ireland’s National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage is now open.

Intangible cultural heritage represents living forms of heritage that cannot be touched – unlike, for example, our built heritage. It refers to the practices, representations and expressions that are central to the lives and identities of our communities, groups and individuals.

Interested parties should fill out and submit an Expression of Interest form, found here.

Expression of Interest forms will be accepted until Wednesday 31 January 2018.

Queries and forms should be directed to nationalich@chg.gov.ie

Intangible Cultural Heritage

In December 2015 Ireland ratified the 2003 UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. Intangible cultural heritage ‘refers to the practices, representations, expressions, knowledge, skills – as well as the instruments, objects, artefacts and cultural spaces associated therewith – that communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals recognize as part of their cultural heritage. This intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups in response to their environment, their interaction with nature and their history, and provides them with a sense of identity and continuity, thus promoting respect for cultural diversity and human creativity’.

As a first step, the Department convened an interim advisory group, comprising representatives from the Arts Council, the Heritage Council, together with the National Monuments Service and Arts Division of the Department, to advise on the implementation of the Convention in Ireland. Following a recommendation of the advisory group, the Minister approved Uilleann Piping and Hurling for inclusion on an interim National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

The Department is currently accepting Expressions of Interest for inclusion in a full National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage, to acknowledge, safeguard and promote Ireland’s living culture through official State recognition. Forms may be downloaded here and submitted by the deadline of Wednesday 31 January 2018 to nationalich@chg.gov.ie.

Successful applicants to the National Inventory may also consider seeking nomination by the State for inscription on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, to which the State is entitled to make one nomination every year.

Ireland has submitted two applications in respect of Uilleann Piping (2016) and Hurling (2017). The assessment process is underway and we await a decision in respect of Uilleann Piping in December 2017. The Hurling application will be considered in the 2018 process, with an anticipated decision timeframe of November 2018. Both of the concerned organisations, Na Píobairí Uilleann and Cumann Lúthchleas Gael, are also working closely with the Department to prepare and support the State applications to the UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

In October 2017 the Memory of the World Division of UNESCO approved the Irish Folklore Commission Collection 1935-1970 (IFCC) for inscription on the Memory of the World register. It now joins our national treasure the Book of Kells, which is the only other item which holds this designation.

Date Reference Element
22nd February 2016 NIICH – 001 Uilleann Piping
22nd February  2016 NIICH – 002 Hurling

Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, 23 Kildare Street, Dublin , D02 TD30. Tel: 01 631 3800 / LoCall: 1890 383 000

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