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Displaying items by tag: Shannon Navigation

Waterways Ireland advises all masters of vessels and users on the Shannon Navigation that the Coosan Point jetties on Lough Ree will be closed from Monday 3 to Thursday 6 October for improvement works.

Published in Inland Waterways

On Friday (23 September), Waterways Ireland marked the commencement of works on two significant tourism and navigation projects on the Shannon Navigation in Portumna, Co Galway.

Minister of State for Disability, Anne Rabbitte and fellow local TDs Ciarán Cannon and Seán Canney, along with Fiona Monaghan and Paddy Mathews from Fáilte Ireland, Alan Farrell from Galway County Council and Éanna Rowe and Phil Cargill from Waterways Ireland turned the sod on the redevelopment of Connaught Harbour.

Elsewhere, at Portumna Bridge the commencement of construction of a blueway cycle and pedestrian trail along the inland waterway linking Portumna Castle and Connaught Harbour was also marked. 
The Connaught Harbour redevelopment project — which is part-funded by Fáilte Ireland and stems from the Shannon Tourism Masterplan and Lough Derg VEDP — consists of a new eight-berth marina at Connaught Harbour, incorporating a boat pump-out with new car parking area and ancillary services.

Quay wall berthing for 22 boats along with car parking and a civic area will also be developed at the bridge yard end of Connaught Harbour. This will be facilitated by the removal of three buildings on the site.

Footpaths will be repaired, where required, and a new road crossing will be developed connecting to the new blueway. Work on the development has begun and the project is expected to be open to the public in mid-2023.
Commenting on the works, Minister Rabbitte said: “I am delighted to be in Portumna today to turn the sod on this exciting development for the area. This investment will transform the area as both a domestic and an international tourist attraction, and for the local people who live in the vicinity.”
Aimed at positioning the Shannon as a hub destination for international and domestic tourism, the Shannon Tourism Masterplan is the first dedicated plan undertaken on the entire Shannon region.

A collaborative project led by Waterways Ireland, with Fáilte Ireland and 10 local authorities along the River Shannon and the Shannon-Erne Waterway, it sets out an integrated framework for sustainable tourism development along the Shannon across to 2030.

The masterplan identifies the measures needed to develop the necessary infrastructure, products and experiences to reposition the Shannon region as a key tourism destination within Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands. 
These Portumna projects are funded by Waterways Ireland, Fáilte Ireland and the Department of Rural and Community Development through the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme.

Fiona Monaghan, head of activities product development at Fáilte Ireland said: “The River Shannon is a signature visitor experience within the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands regional brand and offers huge tourism potential for both domestic and international visitors.

“This investment in Connaught Harbour and the wider Portumna area will help to stimulate greater tourism and visitor activity in this area. These exciting developments will significantly enhance the outdoor recreation infrastructure portfolio in the destination and have the potential to have a transformative impact on Portumna and Lough Derg as a key visitor destination on the Shannon.” 
Jim Cullen, chief executive of Galway County Council said: “This redevelopment project will totally revitalise this area and will add another attractive amenity to the county, for the people who live here and for those who visit.”
Waterways Ireland regional manager Éanna Rowe added: “These projects have significant economic and social benefit and will really increase the recreational and amenity value of this area. I look forward to continuing to work with the Department of Rural and Community Development, Fáilte Ireland and with Galway County Council to bring them to fruition for the people of Galway and beyond.”

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises masters of vessels and users of the Shannon Navigation that significant redevelopment works at Connaught Harbour will commence in the coming weeks.

A new public marina adjacent to Connaught Harbour and redevelopment of the bridge yard site will be undertaken from September to December, followed by some completion works and pile removals in July 2023.

Connaught Harbour and the quay wall at the bridge yard site will be closed for mooring of vessels from this Sunday 18 September until the completion of the works. All vessels moored in these areas should vacate the moorings by this date, the cross-border body for Ireland's inland waterways advises.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises masters of vessels and waterways users on the Shannon Navigation that a series of events will take place in Killaloe next weekend (16-18 September) as part of the end-of-season LUA celebration of ‘wild water’ in the Co Clare village.

Friday 16 September will see the Lough Derg branch of the Inland Waterways Association of Ireland (IWAI) hold its end-of-season celebration with commodores John and Sandra Lefroy and Matt Daniels with guest of honour Mayor of Clare, Tony O’Brien. 
In addition, Norma Manly and band will be in concert at St Flannan’s Cathedral from 8pm.

On Saturday 17 September, there will be a presentation by Gary McMahon, director of the AKA Ilen project on sailing in Irish and international waters for over a century. This takes place at noon in St Flannan’s Cathedral.

It will be followed by a presentation by Martin Cooper on the cathedral’s distinctive bells at 3pm, honouring Bryan and Betty Brislane.

And at 8pm there will be a special concert — Killaloe: a musical celebration — featuring Mary Donahue, Paul Fitzpatrick and friends. Proceeds will go to the Lough Derg Coast Guard and Killaloe Fire and Rescue Services.

On Sunday 18 September, Caroline Rainsford will host a special hour-long session of tai chi by the waterside from 9am, free and suitable for all abilities.

At 11.30am, there will be an ecumenical service at St Flannan’s that will include a blessing of the waterways and environs, followed by a presentation to Sandra and John Lefroy of the famed steamboat Phoenix as well as a closing celebration hosted by the IWAI’s Lough Derg branch.

Throughout the weekend, St Flannan’s will also host a special art exhibition from local artist Trish Taylor Thompson on the theme of the waterways.

Meanwhile, Waterways Ireland advises masters of vessels that construction works have commenced on a new bridge across the Shannon Navigation around 1km downstream of the existing bridge in Killaloe.

A silt curtain has been installed in the navigation and construction works will be extending into the navigation over the next 12 months. Masters of vessels should proceed with additional caution in the vicinity of the construction works.

Published in Inland Waterways

Safety on the water must be improved as demand for staycations on the inland waterways increases.

That’s the warning from boat operators on the Shannon, as reported in The Irish Times, who have raised various issues such as a lack of qualified mechanics for maintenance, poor boat handling and a lack of enforcement of existing bye-laws.

“The Government have a huge thing about water safety at the minute,” says Leslie Shaw, proprietor of Portumna Marine, “but it seems to be only for swimmers.”

The Irish Times has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Inland Waterways

The Shannon’s cruising fleet is in line for a ‘green overhaul’ as Fáilte Ireland seeks consultants to advise on a more sustainable future for the inland waterway.

According to The Irish Times, the new strategy seeks to reverse the decline of the fleet on the Shannon Navigation and Shannon-Erne Waterway to half of its numbers in the 1980s.

And it’s been given a boost by renewed domestic interest in tourism on the waterways since the Covid pandemic.

“On top of that it’s about greening the fleet,” said Paddy Mathews, head of the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands brand. “Looking at new propulsion systems, potentially new fuel sources, potentially looking at how the boats can be converted.”

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises masters of all craft on the Shannon Navigation that there is a sunken vessel on the western side of the navigation some 200m upstream of the N6 bridge at Athlone. previously reported on the rescue of 10 people from the speedboat on Saturday evening by Lough Ree RNLI.

A temporary red buoy is in place to mark the location, and masters are requested to proceed with additional caution in the area.

Elsewhere, on Lough Derg the Green Cage Buoy No 1184 northwest of the Corrikeen Islands has moved from its correct position.

A temporary green buoy has been installed at this location until the cage buoy can be repositioned.

Masters of vessels are urged to proceed with additional caution in the area. The cross-border body for Ireland’s inland waterways assures that the marker will be replaced as soon as possible.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises that further diving operations will be conducted on floating breakwaters along the Shannon Navigation from this coming Tuesday (16 August).

Masters of vessels are requested to proceed with additional caution in the vicinity of the works at Spencer Harbour and Cleighran More on Lough Allen in Co Leitrim, Derryvunny and Rockingham on Lough Key and Kilglass in Co Roscommon until Tuesday 23 August.

The cross-border body for Ireland’s inland waterways previously announced diving operations taking place from 11-19 August at Ballyleague on Lough Ree, Castle Harbour in Portumna and Garrykennedy on Lough Derg, and Limerick city.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises all masters of vessels and waterways users on the Shannon Navigation that restrictions around the construction of the new pedestrian and cycleway bridge in Athlone will continue until the end of next month.

Additionally, the first section of the bridge will be floated downstream from Wansboro Field on a large pontoon from Tuesday 30 to Wednesday 31 August.

Two tugs will be manoeuvring the 18 sqm pontoon, and two safety boats will be on the river during the bridge moving operation.

In preparation for the bridge moving operation, the three upstream sections of the new Waterways Ireland jetty at the railway bridge will be removed from Thursday 25 August.

All power and water to the remaining sections of the jetty will be disconnected for safety reasons from this date, and the red navigation markers at the railway bridge will also be removed.

No vessel will be allowed to moor on this jetty from 8pm on Monday 29 August until 8pm on Wednesday 31 August.

Masters of vessels are advised to proceed with additional caution in the vicinity of the works and to follow the instructions of safety craft and personnel in the area, the cross-border body for Ireland’s inland waterways says.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises masters of vessels on the Shannon Navigation that diving operations will be conducted on the floating breakwaters in four locations between Lough Ree and Limerick from Thursday 11 August until next Friday 19 August.

Masters of vessels are requested to proceed with additional caution in the vicinity of the diving operations taking place at Ballyleague on Lough Ree, Castle Harbour in Portumna and Garrykennedy on Lough Derg, and Limerick city.

Published in Inland Waterways
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Coastal Notes Coastal Notes covers a broad spectrum of stories, events and developments in which some can be quirky and local in nature, while other stories are of national importance and are on-going, but whatever they are about, they need to be told.

Stories can be diverse and they can be influential, albeit some are more subtle than others in nature, while other events can be immediately felt. No more so felt, is firstly to those living along the coastal rim and rural isolated communities. Here the impact poses is increased to those directly linked with the sea, where daily lives are made from earning an income ashore and within coastal waters.

The topics in Coastal Notes can also be about the rare finding of sea-life creatures, a historic shipwreck lost to the passage of time and which has yet many a secret to tell. A trawler's net caught hauling more than fish but cannon balls dating to the Napoleonic era.

Also focusing the attention of Coastal Notes, are the maritime museums which are of national importance to maintaining access and knowledge of historical exhibits for future generations.

Equally to keep an eye on the present day, with activities of existing and planned projects in the pipeline from the wind and wave renewables sector and those of the energy exploration industry.

In addition Coastal Notes has many more angles to cover, be it the weekend boat leisure user taking a sedate cruise off a long straight beach on the coast beach and making a friend with a feathered companion along the way.

In complete contrast is to those who harvest the sea, using small boats based in harbours where infrastructure and safety poses an issue, before they set off to ply their trade at the foot of our highest sea cliffs along the rugged wild western seaboard.

It's all there, as Coastal Notes tells the stories that are arguably as varied to the environment from which they came from and indeed which shape people's interaction with the surrounding environment that is the natural world and our relationship with the sea.

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