#BullochHarbour – Afloat in October reported of a planning application for a mixed development scheme at the former premises of Western Marine at Dalkey’s Bulloch Harbour, whose waters are under pilotage district of Dublin Port Company, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The developer Bartra Property Ltd has sought planning permission for commercial and residential units located at the scenic south Dublin Bay harbour's waterfront site. It is because of this coastal site that has led to fears by locals and from a newly formed Bulloch Harbour Preservation Group. In addition Dalkey Community Council has since held meetings with the developers, citing concerns that the development will have a big impact on the harbour as a recreational and historical amenity for locals and tourists alike.
Western Marine which has yet to reveal its new home, having for almost half a century occupied the Bulloch Harbour site to where if granted permission the development would require demolition of the existing former chandlery warehouses. The development would involve the construction of six terraced homes over “marine-based activity units” and a quayside café.
It is along this stone-cut quayside hewn of Dalkey granite, is where recent developments to improve the harbour took place throughout the summer, notably the removal of a redundant five tonnes boat-hoist crane, property of Dublin Port Company. The harbour in past times used to have larger vessels trading that saw coal imported by steam-powered colliers.
The improvement works were carried out by the joint efforts of Dublin Port Company, Bulloch Harbour Group and Dalkey Tidy Towns to transform the harbour. Asides the aforementioned removal of the boat-crane coloured in distinctive pale blue, associated works involved upgrading of boat storage areas. Boat users also have new quay wall ladders and use of a refurbished slipway.
Bulloch Harbour is one of the last working harbours in Dublin Bay with its small inshore fishing boats, a large boat-hire fleet popular with anglers during the summer months along with marine leisure users mostly kayakers. The harbour is also home to the 3rd Port / 41st Dublin-Dalkey Sea Scouts which celebrates this year a 60th anniversary.
As to the origins of the quaint harbour where still stands Bulloch Castle built in the 12th century overlooking the present day harbour entrance. The castle towerhouse was established by the Cistercian monks along with lucrative fishing rights. The castle afforded protection for the Monks from that of the marauding Wicklow tribes.
Also as part of the improvement works saw the removal of the rotting boat flower bed and its restoration was completed next to the RNLI flag staff. There is no RNLI station located here but the local lifeboat RNLB Anna Livia from Dun Laoghaire Harbour does make visits to Bulloch for the annual 'Blessing of the Boats" ceremony.
The blessing service sees the 'Trent' class lifeboat berth alongside the harbour’s broad pier where coal was discharged. For a photo and more about ‘Maritime Dalkey’ (a five year long series) published in the September 2013 issue, click the Dalkey Community Council (newsletters) website.
According to the current newsletter, Dalkey Tidy Towns say that the harbour's improvement is a work in progress with more planned in 2017.