The new Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan, has said that she "probably will try and endeavour" to improve her Irish, adding "I would have been quite proficient some 30 years ago."

Speaking on RTÉ's The Week In Politics, she said however that "I'm not going to make a promise that I'm going to study Irish, in case I can't follow it through."

Ms Madigan said she studied honours Irish in school and then completed a degree in French and German.

She explained: "I think that your proficiency and fluency in a language does not mean that you don't love the language ... I have a great love for the [Irish] language."

Ms Madigan also praised Taoiseach Leo Varadkar for improving his Irish, saying: "He's exemplary in the standard that he's set - as is [Minister of State] Joe McHugh."

In her new ministerial role, Ms Madigan replaces Heather Humphreys, who was appointed Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation.

Ms Humphreys had held the Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht portfolio since June.

She previously served as Minister for Arts, Heritage, and the Gaeltacht Affairs from July 2014 to May 2016; and Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs from May 2016 to June 2017.