Family forced to launch Go Fund Me page to cover court costs in ongoing Gaelic grave inscription battle

Family forced to launch Go Fund Me page to cover court costs in ongoing Gaelic grave inscription battle

THE family of Margaret Keane - who are in an ongoing battle with the church court that refused a Gaelic inscription on their mother’s grave - have been forced to set up a Go Fund Me appeal to help cover their legal costs.

Launched on Friday, November 13, the Court Costs for Margaret Keane's Headstone Appeal page has a target of £10,000.

Margaret Keane's husband Bernie, with their children, Michael, Donna, Bernadette and Vincent (PIC: Chris Egan)

That is the estimated amount the family of the Co. Meath woman, who died in 2018, could be liable to pay as they continue the appeal process to overturn an anti-Irish ruling made by the Chancellor of the Diocese of Coventry, Stephen Eyre QC.

In May, Mr Eyre refused to allow the headstone to be inscribed as the Coventry family wished, claiming the use of the Gaelic phrase In ár gcroíthe go deo, which means ‘In our hearts forever’, in a British graveyard could be deemed a political statement.

Margaret Keane's grave at St Giles Church in Coventry

Last month The Irish Post exclusively revealed that to pursue this review of their case, the family could be forced to pay all of the court’s costs, whatever the outcome.

In a statement on their new Go Fund Me page, the family explained why they now have to ask for help in covering these costs.

“Despite the fact that our legal team are all acting for us on a free of charge basis, we could be required by the Arches Court of Canterbury to pay the court substantial costs, which will include costs for the judges’ time, as well as the provincial registrar’s time.”

They added: “It is difficult to predict how much those further costs will be as they are based on future time spent by the court, but they could reach thousands of pounds.
“This is an immense burden for the family to bear.”

They explained: “Building on the immense support shown to the family since the ruling of the Consistory Court became public, this fund seeks donations to alleviate the financial burden regarding court costs.

“Any surplus funds will go to Conradh na Gaeilge – Londain organisation, costs liability in this case and The Margaret Keane Memorial Fund.

To support the fundraising appeal, click here.