Past Winners

2017 – Ionad na Faiche Móire/Eyre Square Centre

“We were absolutely delighted to be the overall winners of the Gradam 2017. The Irish language is such aLydonImages_72 huge part of our culture and heritage and as one of largest public buildings in the City, with a footfall of over 10 million visitors each year, to support the language is something we are extremely proud off. Especially as Galway City was granted the bilingual status last year and winning the European Capital of Culture 2020.

We are so proud that we could influence some of our tenants to embrace the Irish language which they have done in the form of bilingual signage. The tenants have been surprised with the amount of positive feedback they have received.” 

Avril Smith, Centre Manager 


2016 – Top Oil 

Tuam Road, Galwaytop_oil_suiomh

“As an Irish company, we are very proud to have won Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh – Galway’s own Bilingual Business award, because of our use of the Irish language in Galway.

The Gradam is a wonderful recognition and a great result for all of our hard work.

We are also extremely proud to be recognised as the fifteenth tribe of Galway!”

Clíona Ní Mhurchú, Top Oil


2015 -Joyce’s Supermarket

Knocknacarra, Galway

“All of the team at Joyce’s Supermarket in Knocknacarra are delighted and extremely proud to have won Gradam JoycesSheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh 2015. We have thoroughly enjoyed taking part in the process. Situated in the gateway to Connemara, taking part in the Gradam process has helped us to promote one of our unique selling points. Offering a seirbhís i nGaeilge to our customers, publishing advertisements in the local media, bringing the language alive in our store with in store advertisements and using the Irish language on our shopping bags and merchandise is something that our competitors don’t do. It makes us different. We are local, we are from the community, we value our heritage, we strive to promote Irish produce within our stores and we have a passion for the language.”

Aisling Joyce


2014 – Tesco Galway

Galway Shopping Centre, Headford Road. 

Manager – Denis McCarthy

Tesco Galway has been announced as the overall winner of Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh at a special awards ceremony, which took place in the Galway Bay Hotel on Thursday 10th April 2014. The Mayor of the Pic2City of Galway, Cllr Padraig Conneely, presented Denis McCarthy, Store Manager, Tesco Galway, with Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh.

Tesco Galway has embraced the Irish language throughout its newly refreshed store, featuring Irish language on aisle signage. Irish has also been introduced on store branding, with Tesco’s well-known tagline translated – Tugann an rud is lú cúnamh! Customers can enjoy service in Irish at designated checkouts, the customer service desk and around the shop floor. Each of the stores’ 200 colleagues are being introduced to the language through bilingual phrases and notices in in all staff areas, as well as participating in Irish language classes to enhance the shopping experience for Irish-speaking customers. Tesco has also introduced Irish on tannoy announcements as well as dual signage on online shopping vans. The retailer has future plans to roll out dual-language signage to all stores as they undergo refits and also plan to introduce dual-language self-service counters in stores around the country.


2013 – The Galleon Restaurant

Salthill, Galway

Owner: Roger O’Sullivan

Foireann_GalleonThe Mayor of the City of Galway, Cllr. Terry O’Flaherty announced The Galleon Restaurant as the overall winners of Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh 2013. The announcement was made at a Special Awards Ceremony which took place in the Galway Bay Hotel on Thursday the 18th of April 2013.  The Galleon Restaurant was named as the winner of the ‘Tourism & Hospitality Category’ sponsored by Fáilte Ireland and went on to scoop the overall award on the night.

The Galleon is a traditional Irish family restaurant located in Salthill since 1965, and now in its third generation of the same family.  The Irish language is evident on both interior and exterior signage, on menus, marketing and on their website and social media. They also employ several Irish speaking staff members who can cater for customers through Irish. This was the Galleon’s first time to enter the Gradam and clearly their dedicated and consistent efforts were worthwhile.



2012 – EmployAbility Service Galway

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht,  Dinny McGinley T.D., announced that EmployAbility Service Galway was the overall winners of Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh 2012. He made the announcement at a Special Awards Ceremony which took place in the Glenlo Abbey Hotel on Thursday the 19th of April 2012.  EmployAbilityService Galway, based in the John Paul Centre, Ballybane, work with employers and job seekers with disabilities to promote inclusion, and diversity in the workplace through focusing on ability.

EmployAbility Service Galway believes that employment delivers more than a job.  During our process, financial reasons are seldom the main motivation for looking for work.  Work gives a sense of purpose, self-respect, and achievement.  Employers provide much more than just a job – employment can be a life changing experience developing a person’s self-confidence and feelings of self-worth.


2011 – Menlo Park Hotel

Terryland, Galway

Minister of State at the Departmet of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht,  Dinny McGinley T.D.,  announced the Menlo Park Hotel, Terryland as the overall winner of Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh 2011. The Menlo Park Hotel had previously participated in the Gradam but has truely excelled this year in the use and promotion of the language within the hotel. The Menlo Park Hotel is a very popular hotel for meetings, events, weddings, and functions situated in the Galway city Gaeltacht. The bars and restaurant has a very loyal local trade. In addition the hotel welcomes an international clientele from all over the world. The hotel has 70 bedrooms with 16 superior rooms which feature a bilingual greeting to all guests.

The Menlo Park Hotel stood out for their creativity, innovation and drive to make Irish work at work. The Irish language is central to Hotel policy and ensures that visitors to Galway who stay in the Menlo Park Hotel and locals alike experience the Irish language. The hotel also organises a weekly ‘Ciorcal Comhrá’ which gives locals the opportunity to practice their ‘cúpla focal’ on a regular basis. This in return, has a great impact on their own staff, the community and on Galway’s image and reputation as being a bilingual Cultural City.

2009 – Griffins Bakery 

Shop Street, Galway
Jimmy and Bogna Griffin

Griffins Bakery is a 134 year old fourth generation Family Bakery Business, which was established in 1876 by John Griffin at Cross St. Griffins have always had strong ties to it’s great Irish Traditions and Baking heritage. Griffins have been supported all these years by their loyal customers from the Gaeltacht areas, Aran Islands and Connemara as well as the city. As intrinsic as our language and heritage are to Galway, Griffins are fortunate to be a part of the living history of the city. The traditions live on and Griffins intend to promote and celebrate their bilingual heritage in the coming weeks by including bilingual signage both externally on their revamped shop front and in the bakery itself.


2008 – Lohans Bar & Restaurant 

Salthill, Galway
Patricia Lohan


Éamon Ó Cuív TD, Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs announced that Lohans Bar & Restaurant as the overall winners of Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh this year.

Since opening three years ago Lohans in Salthill, have constantly increased the visibility and usage of Gaeilge throughout the business and their ability and enthusiasm to communicate through Irish is evident throughout from outside out door with bilingual external signage and as soon as you enter their premises, their bilingual tag line Bia Úr Den Scoth emanates throughout! Lohans newly developed bilingual website is completely bilingual, internal advertising, TV screens, bilingual menus, stationery and all advertisements include a bilingual element.

2007 – Corrib Removals & Storage 

Busy Park, Gaillimh.
Manager: Siobhán Feeney


The Mayor of Galway, Councillor Tom Costello,  presented Corrib Removals & Storage with the beautiful sculpture designed especially for the Gradam by Pádraic Reaney, depicting the 14 Tribes of Galway, with one extra tribe outstanding, symbolising the Gradam winner – the new Tribe of Galway.  Corrib Removals & Storage is one of the leading removal and storage companies in the West of Ireland. Established in 1980, it has grown significantly through the years, growing from a local and national removal company to an international company relocating people and businesses to different destinations around the globe. The Irish language is an integral part of this company as there is a complete service in Irish available in the company, Irish is using in all branding on all marketing material, signage, trucks and t-shirts.  The judges were particularly impressed with the bilingual tag line that was in use. – Ag bogadh do ghnó gan stró.


2006 – Aran Díreach go hÁrainn 

Foster Street, Gaillimh.
Marketing Manager: Karen Smyth Díreach go hÁrainn has been awarded the prestigious Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh Award at a Special Ceremony in the Ardilaun Hotel, Thursday 22nd February 2007. Díreach go hÁrainn run passenger ferries to the Aran Islands and has offices in Galway City centre and Ros a Mhíl harbour. The company implements a strong Irish language policy throughout the business, and actively promotes the Irish language as part of its sales and marketing activities.  The company’s commitment to bilingualism is demonstrated by its bilingual brand identity, bilingual stationery, and the use of Irish on advertising, tickets, emails, telephone, public notices and on the website ( and the availability of a complete service through Irish.

2005 – Galway Simon Community

Galway Simon Community, The Crescent, Galway.
Chairperson: Deirdre Fahy


The local branch of the national charity, Simon Community, Galway Simon, were awarded the prestigious Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh Award 2006 at a Special Ceremony at the Ardilaun House Hotel. Minister Éamon Ó Cuív, T.D. presented Deirdre Fahy, Chairperson of Galway Simon Community, with the beautiful sculpture designed especially for the Gradam by Pádraig Reaney, depicting the 14 Tribes of Galway, with one extra tribe outstanding, symbolising the Gradam winner – the new Tribe of Galway. Deirdre Fahy of Galway Simon Community was delighted to receive the award and spoke of the organisation’s commitment to providing their services bilingually, and said that Galway Simon was very much in favour of An Ghaeilge.
The charity have a central bilingual policy, and have, in the last few years, extended bilingualism throughout the entire local organisation.  The signage in their offices in the Crescent are all bilingual, promotional material and brochures are bilingual, and even their collection boxes are in Irish and English. The Galway Simon Community have striven to incorporate Irish into all aspects of the local organisation, with T-shirts printed in Irish for the Galway 10k run, and have used the Irish proverb ‘Níl aon tinteán mar do thinteán féin’ on their advertising.

2004 – Café Bananaphoblacht


Café Bananaphoblacht, Dominick Street, Galway
Owner: Alex Hijmans

Café Bananaphoblacht, a well-known café in Galway city, was awarded the Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh 2004 at a special ceremony in the Ardilaun House Hotel on the 21st February 2004. Dr. Peadar Ó Flatharta, Chairman of Gaillimh le Gaeilge, congratulated Bananaphoblacht for the way in which Irish was incorporated as a central aspect of their business, where their coffee, hot chocolate and the Irish Language had been intertwined successfully.

Pádraic Ó Ráighne, Marketing Executive of TG4 spoke on behalf of the Adjudicators and said:
“It was very evident once we walked through the doors of Café Bananaphoblacht that we were immersed in  the world of the Irish Language. From the name of the business to the bilingual menu,  a small bilingual library  and Irish-speaking staff, the café not only offer the highest quality food and drink, but also a Gaelach experience. Alex and his team have done great work in promoting the language in the city and its obvious that he and his staff avail of every opportunity in doing this.”

2003 – D’Arcy Marketing

D’Arcy Marketing, 2nd Floor, 13 Forster Street, Galway.
Managing Director: Nóirín D’Arcy

D’Arcy Marketing was awarded the Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh 2003 at a special ceremony in the Ardilaun House Hotel on the 26th February 2004. Dr. Peadar Ó Flatharta, Chariman of Gaillimh le Gaeilge, congratulated D’Arcy Marketing for the way in which Irish was incorporated as a central aspect of their business, and their enthusiasm and dedication to the use of the language.

D’Arcy Marketing is a small company, established in 1988 (and based in Forster Street) to provide a professional, innovative and tailored approach to Sales and Marketing within the Services, Tourism, Health and Leisure Industries.  The company has done very well, with clients all over the country, such as Aer Árann, The Department of the Marine & Natural Resources, and Sweeney Hotels to name but a few. Bilingualism is an integral part of the company’s everyday work, and it is visible in their signage, stationery, service, and marketing communications activities. But more importantly, D’Arcy Marketing understand the importance of the use of Irish in all types of businesses, and they encourage and inspire other businesses to incorporate Irish into their marketing activities and other aspects of their business.


 2002 – The Warwick Hotel

The Warwick Hotel, Salthill, Galway.
Owners: Diarmuid & Sandra Ó Conchubhair

At a Special Ceremony in the Ardilaun House Hotel, Gradam Sheosaimh Uí Ógartaigh, the Galway Business Award hosted by Gaillimh le Gaeilge in association with the Galway Chamber of Commerce, was awarded to The Warwick Hotel, Salthill, Galway.

Professor Diarmuid Ó Cearbhaill speaking on behalf of the adjudicators congratulated the hotel owners Diarmuid and Sandra O’Connor. He also made special reference to the other 3 finalists and praised them in their work in promoting Galway as the bilingual capital of Ireland, however the Warwick Hotel was especially singled out for their impact, their diligence and their plans for their future in relation to the use of the Irish language and in particular as they were seen to be a visible bilingual entity and a gateway between the city and Salthill. All applicants have incorporated Irish into their business in various ways, such as in signage, stationery, menus, providing service in Irish, and by many other innovative means.