Displaying items by tag: Houseboats
“The body responsible for canal boating doesn’t seem to want boating on the canals.”
That’s the response of Gary Long, one of a number of barge owner on the Grand Canal in Dublin at the centre of a recent controversy over houseboat moorings on the inland waterway, as he spoke to The Irish Times this week.
The ‘liveaboard’ barge owners had faced eviction from their homes by Waterways Ireland this month as current by-laws prohibit mooring in any one spot for longer than five days.
The owners were given a reprieve of sorts by the New Minister of State for Heritage, Malcolm Noonan, and assured that their vessels would not be confiscated and sold off.
And the minister has promised that Waterways Ireland will engage in “finding a long-term, sustainable solution to regularise the use of the canals”.
But for now, liveaboards like Gary Long — and Luís Gómezcala who lives on his boat at the 12th Lock on the Royal Canal — remain in legal limbo.
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.
The news comes after last week’s final-hour reprieve for a number of barge owners who had faced eviction under the current by-law which prohibits mooring in any one spot for longer than five consecutive days.
They also faced the prospect of losing their vessels under original plans to lift them from the canal and impound them for a month before selling them off.
New Minister of State for Heritage, Malcolm Noonan, stepped in to assure these barge owners that theirs and others’ “genuine or legitimate houseboats or so-called ‘live-ons’” would not be removed.
He added that Waterways Ireland, the cross-border body that manages Ireland’s inland waterways, would now engage “in a collaborative process with all stakeholders around finding a long-term, sustainable solution to regularise the use of the canals”.
This is in addition to Waterways Ireland’s 10-year strategic review, which is expected to be available for consultation later this year — and will consider the likes of new infrastructure on the canal to cater for the requirements of houseboats.
TheJournal.ie has more on the story HERE.
Despite the growing demand for houseboat living in Ireland, there are only 28 residential moorings across the whole of the country, as RTÉ Radio 1’s Morning Ireland reports today (Wednesday 3 July).
Waterways Ireland says it received as many as 10 queries a week from prospective houseboat residents — who will likely be waiting some time as only Grand Canal Dock and Shannon Harbour, with eight moorings, have provision for live-aboard homes.
Others make do with part-time waterways living, using the current 90-day permits to move around the country’s canals and rivers.
But with demand on the increase, it’s a situation that Waterways Ireland acknowledges has to change. RTÉ Radio 1 has more on the report HERE.