ARTS chiefs have announced the creation of a 'Scriever' who will produce original works in Scots in an effort to safeguard the language.

The creation of the post was announced as Creative Scotland released its first Scots Language Policy in support of the language through its own work and the work that it funds across the arts, screen and creative industries.

The post of Scots Scriever, or writer, to give it its English term, is a first for Scotland, and a joint initiative between Creative Scotland and the National Library of Scotland.

The role will involve a two-year residency based at the National Library of Scotland supported and will be funded by Creative Scotland.

As well as coming up with original work, the Scriever will be tasked with raising awareness of Scots and its dialects across the country and amongst all parts of the population.

Dr John Scally, National Librarian at the National Library of Scotland said: "We are delighted to be working with Creative Scotland in creating this exciting new writing role, as part of our continuing commitment to the Scots language.

"Our collections are rich in Scots and include some of the earliest examples of written Scots through to writers such as Robert Burns, Hugh MacDiarmid and, in more recent times, Irvine Welsh."

Jenny Niven, Head of Literature, Publishing and Languages at Creative Scotland said: "We have provided support for Scots across a range of art forms for many years now including literature, theatre, music and film. What this policy does, however, is provide focus for our efforts to support the language in all its variants and dialects, generating a sense of renewed energy and intent. We are particularly pleased to be working in partnership with the National Library of Scotland to host the new Scots Scriever role which will further support the work to support Scots undertaken by us and many other organisations."

The Language Policy was published yesterday at an event hosted by the National Library of Scotland and attended by Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Europe and External Affairs and the writer and Scots publisher, James Robertson.

The Scottish Government released a statement in both Scots and English, where Fiona Hyslop, named the Cabinet Secretary "fir Culture, Europe an Ootlan Affairs" said:

"The Scottish Government's ambition is fur the Scots language tae be kent, gien wurth an yaisit in Scottish public an hameart life.

"The Scots language is a heichmaist pairt o Scotland's kenspecklt culture an heritage, an the Scottish Government taks tent o the forderin o the Scots language throughoot Scotland in aw its regional an local sindrie kins.

"In adoptin this policie, Creative Scotland hauds wi the contribution the Scots language has brocht, an continues tae bring, tae Scotland's rich culture an heritage, in a kintra wi mair nor 1.5 million Scots spikkars."

James Robertson added: "I welcome this strong statement of commitment and intent from Creative Scotland. It recognises Scots both as a part of the identity and daily life of hundreds of thousands of people, and as a special national cultural asset.

"I hope this policy encourages creative individuals and organisations throughout the land to engage with Scots in all kinds of ways. This is not about looking back, whatever the language's past achievements: it is about ensuring that Scots goes forward to be seen and heard in the future."