Paisley will play host to the Royal National Mòd within the next five years, it has been announced.
As the town bids to be named UK City of Culture 2021, it was revealed today that it will stage the annual celebration of Gaelic culture that year – if it wins the title, with the Mòd travelling to Perth in 2022.
But if Paisley, which last hosted the prestigious event in 2013, is not named UK City of Culture, one of Paisley or Perth will host in 2021, with the decision made on a point scoring system.
The place which does not host in 2021, will stage the event the following year.
It’s the first time that the Mòd’s organising body, An Comunn Gàidhealach has announced plans for more than a single year, due to the ‘exceptional standard’ of applications by both
Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson said: “We are delighted the Mòd is coming back to Paisley and we look forward to working with our friends at An Comunn to deliver another successful event.
“Paisley’s central location, outstanding transport links and proven record as a major event host will make Gaelic culture accessible to new audiences – our last Mòd in 2013 saw 8,000 people attend over nine days and a great atmosphere.
“The legacy of that was to strengthen Renfrewshire’s commitment to Gaelic language development – we have since invested in arts programming, and our annual Fèis Phàislig music event has reached around 700 schoolchildren so far.
“Should Paisley be named as UK City of Culture in 2021 that year’s Mòd will form part of an international-class cultural programme – but even if we are waiting another year we will be ready to welcome Gaels from across the world, and delighted to do so.”
In the final day of competitions at this year’s Mòd in Locahber, the area choirs were set to compete in the highly anticipated Lovat and Tullibardine Trophy and Margrat Duncan Memorial Trophy at the Nevis Centre.
John Morrison, Chief Executive of An Comunn Gàidhealach said: “The applications to host Mòd 2021 was exceptionally high, and we were particularly impressed by the two bids from Paisley and Perth.
“With each bid offering unique features, we felt it only fair to recognise their strength by offering them both the opportunity to host the Royal National Mòd – one in 2021, and the other in 2022.
“We feel that the chance to host our Royal National Mòd in the UK City of Culture would be too good an opportunity to forego, and we wish our friends in Paisley luck ahead of the final decision on the UK City of Culture title. Equally, we look forward to returning to the lovely city of Perth, in the not too distant future.”