Cant/Gammon and Tinsmithing on National Inventory of Intangible Culture

In July 2019, two elements of Traveller culture were inscribed on Ireland’s National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage.   This means the Government agrees to protect, promote and celebrate these living cultural heritage practices, customs, crafts and traditions.

Traveller organisations got together to apply for this recognition as we feel it’s important these traditions be preserved.

“This recognition is an important development on the back of the recognition of Traveller ethnicity in 2017.  It is a further recognition of the unique culture and identity of Irish Travellers, ” said Martin Collins, Pavee Point Co Director.

“For these traditions to be preserved and promoted there is a need for resources to facilitate inter-generational engagement so these traditions can continue to be passed on.

“Pavee Point looks forward to playing its role in supporting and promoting these elements into the future.”


Cant/Gammon is a traditional language spoken by Irish Travellers.  See  National Inventory description.


Traveller Tinsmithing

Traveller tinsmithing consists of a particular skill mastered by Travellers in the making of utensils from tin.  See National Inventory description.

©Photo by Derek Speirs


In 2003 Ireland signed up to a 2003 UNESCO Convention which aims at promoting respect for cultural diversity and human creativity.

Successful applicants to the National Inventory may also  seek 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. These are among 30 elements approved by the Department of Arts, Culture and the Gaeltacht.