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Displaying items by tag: Brendan Connor

27th November 2023

Brendan Connor RIP

It is with the deepest regret that we record the death of Brendan Connor of Howth, who was Howth Yacht Club’s most senior member, having joined what was then Howth Motor Yacht Club as a Junior Member in 1947. In time he was to give long service as one of its most highly-regarded voluntary officers, working with calm and quiet efficiency as the Honorary Secretary during the sometimes turbulent years when the club was emerging from its two constituent smaller clubs, to become what was eventually the largest sailing club in Ireland, complete with its own marina complex and a thriving and successful sailing fleet.

He’d shown his maritime enthusiasm by serving as a cadet officer in the Merchant Marine. Then he went into the family business in Dublin, and as computers began to make their mark, he proved an effective pioneer in understanding them and using them to best advantage.

This stood him in good stead when he agreed to be co-ordinator of the Connor-Malcolm-Nixon trio, which produced the award-winning history of Howth Yacht Club for its Centenary in 1995, with’s W M Nixon producing the words, and the tireless Ian Malcolm of the Howth 17s proving to be a very effective at sourcing the 550 photos used. Thanks to Brennie Connor’s calm yet strong leadership, the book appeared precisely on time for the actual Centenary date of Saturday, November 18th 1995.

His own choices in boat ownership reflected his natural seafaring good sense, which had started with crewing in an IDRA 14. He first came to notice as owner-skipper of the Folkboat Dysca, at a time when the Folkboat Class was a real force in the Irish Sea. As she was the first boat to have been built by the legendary Jeremy Rogers of Lymington, Dysca was one of the most elegant boats in the fleet, but at just 25ft LOA she had her comfort limitations for someone advancing into middle age, so he moved up to the eminently sensible Mark 1 Arpege Leemara.

But Brennie Connor’s sailing interests weren’t restricted to his own boats, and as an experienced cruising nan (he’d been elected to the Irish Cruising Club in 1980) he was a popular guest shipmate on other craft, many of them larger vessels based in the Mediterranean, whose best cruising areas he got to know very well.

Back home, he and his late wife Frankie were parents whose children were married in time to make him both a grandfather and great-grandfather, all of which he took calmly in his classic unflurried style. He brought a beneficial interest to everything in which he was interested, and the Howth sailing scene of today owes much to his quiet and determined sense of purpose, and his unfailing good humour.

Our heartfelt sympathies are with his extended family and his very many friends.


Published in Howth YC

Dublin Bay

Dublin Bay on the east coast of Ireland stretches over seven kilometres, from Howth Head on its northern tip to Dalkey Island in the south. It's a place most Dubliners simply take for granted, and one of the capital's least visited places. But there's more going on out there than you'd imagine.

The biggest boating centre is at Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the Bay's south shore that is home to over 1,500 pleasure craft, four waterfront yacht clubs and Ireland's largest marina.

The bay is rather shallow with many sandbanks and rocky outcrops, and was notorious in the past for shipwrecks, especially when the wind was from the east. Until modern times, many ships and their passengers were lost along the treacherous coastline from Howth to Dun Laoghaire, less than a kilometre from shore.

The Bay is a C-shaped inlet of the Irish Sea and is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and 7 km in length to its apex at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south. North Bull Island is situated in the northwest part of the bay, where one of two major inshore sandbanks lie, and features a 5 km long sandy beach, Dollymount Strand, fronting an internationally recognised wildfowl reserve. Many of the rivers of Dublin reach the Irish Sea at Dublin Bay: the River Liffey, with the River Dodder flow received less than 1 km inland, River Tolka, and various smaller rivers and streams.

Dublin Bay FAQs

There are approximately ten beaches and bathing spots around Dublin Bay: Dollymount Strand; Forty Foot Bathing Place; Half Moon bathing spot; Merrion Strand; Bull Wall; Sandycove Beach; Sandymount Strand; Seapoint; Shelley Banks; Sutton, Burrow Beach

There are slipways on the north side of Dublin Bay at Clontarf, Sutton and on the southside at Dun Laoghaire Harbour, and in Dalkey at Coliemore and Bulloch Harbours.

Dublin Bay is administered by a number of Government Departments, three local authorities and several statutory agencies. Dublin Port Company is in charge of navigation on the Bay.

Dublin Bay is approximately 70 sq kilometres or 7,000 hectares. The Bay is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and seven km in length east-west to its peak at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the southside of the Bay has an East and West Pier, each one kilometre long; this is one of the largest human-made harbours in the world. There also piers or walls at the entrance to the River Liffey at Dublin city known as the Great North and South Walls. Other harbours on the Bay include Bulloch Harbour and Coliemore Harbours both at Dalkey.

There are two marinas on Dublin Bay. Ireland's largest marina with over 800 berths is on the southern shore at Dun Laoghaire Harbour. The other is at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club on the River Liffey close to Dublin City.

Car and passenger Ferries operate from Dublin Port to the UK, Isle of Man and France. A passenger ferry operates from Dun Laoghaire Harbour to Howth as well as providing tourist voyages around the bay.

Dublin Bay has two Islands. Bull Island at Clontarf and Dalkey Island on the southern shore of the Bay.

The River Liffey flows through Dublin city and into the Bay. Its tributaries include the River Dodder, the River Poddle and the River Camac.

Dollymount, Burrow and Seapoint beaches

Approximately 1,500 boats from small dinghies to motorboats to ocean-going yachts. The vast majority, over 1,000, are moored at Dun Laoghaire Harbour which is Ireland's boating capital.

In 1981, UNESCO recognised the importance of Dublin Bay by designating North Bull Island as a Biosphere because of its rare and internationally important habitats and species of wildlife. To support sustainable development, UNESCO’s concept of a Biosphere has evolved to include not just areas of ecological value but also the areas around them and the communities that live and work within these areas. There have since been additional international and national designations, covering much of Dublin Bay, to ensure the protection of its water quality and biodiversity. To fulfil these broader management aims for the ecosystem, the Biosphere was expanded in 2015. The Biosphere now covers Dublin Bay, reflecting its significant environmental, economic, cultural and tourism importance, and extends to over 300km² to include the bay, the shore and nearby residential areas.

On the Southside at Dun Laoghaire, there is the National Yacht Club, Royal St. George Yacht Club, Royal Irish Yacht Club and Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club as well as Dublin Bay Sailing Club. In the city centre, there is Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club. On the Northside of Dublin, there is Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club and Sutton Dinghy Club. While not on Dublin Bay, Howth Yacht Club is the major north Dublin Sailing centre.

© Afloat 2020