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1960-1969

Film making
In 1960, Gael Linn's foray into film-making resulted in what was perhaps the crowning achievement of those early years when it produced Mise Éire, the first ever full-length feature film in Irish and the first ever feature film based on actual newsreel footage, with the now famous music score by Seán Ó Riada. The film covered the struggle for Irish independence from the early 1890s to 1917.

One of the specialities of the Gael Linn film production operation were occasional short instructional films on aspects of Irish life, most notably hurling and footballing skills, memorably represented by the 1963 film on the hurling tecnique of Christy Ring. In 1972, another Gael Linn production, Páistí ag Obair was invited to participate in the London Film Festival, and subsequently received an Oscar nomination.

Christy Ring
Films represented an early and important success for Gael Linn. After some initial suspicion, the public rapidly warmed to the new idea. "It would be true to say that the first films shown in Irish cinemas produced a bit of a giggle," Dónall Ó Móráin remembered some years later. "People were so surprised at hearing Irish in the cinema. But the giggles soon subsided." Although, with a couple of exceptions, the films failed to make money, they were remarkably successful in their primary objective of promoting the language in the day-to-day life of the country.

In 1965, a short film on social development in Ireland, Rhapsody of a River, commissioned by the then Department for External Affairs, was screened at the Cork Film Festival to considerable public acclaim. In 1966, a special commemorative film on 1916, An Tine Bheo, commissioned by the 1916 Jubilee Committee, was released and shown in cinemas throughout Ireland. In 1967, a Gael Linn-produced short film on a traditional music festival, Fleá Ceoil, won a n award at the Berlin Film Festival. Another short film, an amusing commentary on equine sports in Ireland, Capallology, was released and won the 'Monaco' award at the Brussels Film Festival in 1968.

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Commercial Activities
In 1964, Gael Linn took out a majority shareholding in a furniture manufacturing enterprise, John Hogg & Co. Ltd., trading as Crannac, in Navan, Co. Meath.

A couple of years later, the organisation established a special marketing company, Irlandia, to market Crannac furniture and other Irish manufactured products in the U.K.

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An Ghaeltacht
In 1960, Gael Linn invested in a seaweed processing factory, Tora Toinne Teoranta, in An Cheathrú Rua, in the Galway Gaeltacht. In 1961, a bee-keeping scheme was established in the West Cork Gaeltacht of Cúl Aodha and Corca Dhuibhne in West Kerry.

The following year, properties in Baile an Fheirtéirigh and Dún Chaoin, in Corca Dhuibhne, were purchased for the development of Gaeltacht holidays, and Gael Linn undertook the running of a co-op shop in An Rinn, in the Waterford Gaeltacht, which survived until 1969.

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Incorporation
In 1962, the by then flourishing organisation had been incorporated as Gael Linn Teoranta, a company limited by guarantee without share capital.
This heralded the direct involvement by Gael Linn in a new operations of a socio-economic nature, including in 1963 a foray into the production of traditional hand knitted garments, with the founding of Inisfree Handknits Ltd., in conjunction with The Donegal Shop, a retail premises in Dublin's Creation Arcade.

Some years later, this business was expanded to include a new music section, Fónodisc, specialising in traditional and classical music.

Meanwhile, 1962 also saw the establishment of a youth club for former recipients of Gael Linn Gaeltacht scholarships, and that year also, Gael Linn began its hugely lucrative Bingo operation which was to help fund its many activities for several decades.

In 1965, a summer college for recipients of Gael Linn three-month Gaeltacht scholarships, Coláiste Mac Dara, was established in An Cheathrú Rua in the Galway Gaeltacht, later transferring to Machaire Rabhartaigh in the Donegal Gaeltacht.

In 1969, Irlandia was merged with another marketing company, Furniture Marketing Group Ltd., which took on responsibility for the marketing of Crannac furniture in the home market and this arrangment continued for a number of years until Gael Linn withdrew from the operation, selling its shares. In 1966, a metalworking enterprise, Miotalra, was established in Carna, in partnership with a Dublin-based company.

In 1967, a Friendly Society, Cara-Chumann Gael Linn, was established, under the auspices of Gael Linn, and the same year a majority shareholding was purchased in Glens of Antrim Tweed Co. Ltd. in Cushendall, Co. Antrim. This company traded successfully until 1979.

In 1968, Gael Linn purchased and refurbished a licensed bar and restaurant, Óstán John Devoy, in Johnstown, Co. Kildare, and retained an involvement for a number of years. In 1968 also, at the request of Clann na hÉireann, Gael Linn took over the running of a Hostel, Brú na Mí, in the Co. Meath Gaeltacht of Baile Ghib.

That same year, Gael Linn was instrumental in setting up a joint venture with Gaeltarra Éireann and three other parties in the hotel industry, Gaeltearmann Teoranta, to establish a chain of quality hotels in Gaeltacht areas, starting with Cathair Uí Dhónaill, in Kerry.

With such an impressive range of successes in the cultural life of the nation, it had by the early 1960s seemed logical to seek to expand further, and extend the organisation's reach from the Irish-speaking heartlands to the broader life of the nation. Gael Linn applied for the licence to run the first national television channel, but the decision of the Goverment to establish Teilifís Éireann, a semi-state body, to run the new service, prompted the organisation to think again about how it might achieve its broader purpose.