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Dublin Bay Boating News and Information

Displaying items by tag: Wicklow

#RNLI - Wicklow RNLI launched to assist a yacht in difficulty before 10am yesterday morning (Sunday 11 May) just as lifeboat volunteers were preparing to launch on a crew exercise in Wicklow Bay.

The call for assistance from the yacht with three people on board was received by the Irish Coast Guard, who tasked Wicklow RNLI to the scene.

Both of the station’s lifeboats were immediately launched to attend to the 27-foot yacht, which was located one mile south of Wicklow Head.

The yacht’s tiller had snapped and the crew had lost all steering control. Conditions in the area were moderately windy, with a westerly Force 4 in moderate seas.

Lifeboat crew members John Vize and Paul Sillery were put on the yacht to assist with establishing a towline. Once this was completed, the vessel was taken in tow by the all-weather lifeboat.

With no tiller on the yacht the tow back to Wicklow was slow; a drogue was rigged to assist with the progress.

The lifeboat arrived back in the harbour at 12.10pm and the yacht with three crew was secured safely alongside the East Pier.

The crew on the all-weather lifeboat were coxswain Ciaran Doyle, mechanic Brendan Copeland, Carol Flahive, Connie O’Gara, John Vize and Alan Goucher. The inshore lifeboat crew were helm Mark Kavanagh, Paul Sillery and Matt Doyle.

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#RNLI - Wicklow RNLI's second call-out this bank holiday weekend – after Friday's early morning tow of a stricken yacht - saw two on board a 13m cruiser brought to safety early today (4 May) after their vessel suffered engine failure.

The station's all-weather lifeboat was launched at 6.44am and located the vessel a short time later, two miles east of Wicklow Harbour.

Volunteer crew member Terry Sillery went on board the motor cruiser to assist with establishing a towline.

Weather conditions in the area at the time were blowing a westerly force three wind and there was poor visibility.

The motor cruiser was on passage to Wales when it developed engine trouble. The owner put down an anchor so the vessel would not drift and contacted the Irish Coast Guard for assistance.

The stricken motor cruiser was towed into Wicklow Harbour and safety secured alongside the East Pier at 7.40am.

The crew on the call-out were coxswain Dave O'Leary, mechanic Tommy Murphy, Terry Sillery, Carol Flahive, Brian Sinnott, Connie O'Gara, John Vize and Alan Goucher.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#RNLI - Wicklow RNLI launched in the early hours of yesterday morning (Friday 2 May) to bring a yacht and its crew of three to safety.

The volunteer crew launched their all-weather lifeboat at 2.57am in response to a call for assistance from an English yacht with three people on board some 23 miles north-east of Wicklow Harbour.

The alarm was raised after the skipper of a yacht contacted the coastguard to say he was unable to make any headway due to insufficient wind, and was having difficulties after the boat’s engine had failed.

The lifeboat, under the command of coxswain Tommy McAulay and five volunteer crew members, located the vessel at 4.20am. A towline was passed and the casualty was towed into Wicklow Harbour, arriving safely at 6.55am.

Speaking following the call out, Wicklow RNLI lifeboat operations manager Des Davitt said: "Our volunteers are always on call and prepared to respond to any emergency at any time. 

"We were delighted to be of assistance at this early hour and were glad to be able to bring these three people and their yacht safely to shore."

The lifeboat crew on the call out were coxswain Tommy McAulay, mechanic Brendan Copeland and crew members John Vize, Tommy Murphy, Connie O Gara and Alan Goucher.

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#RNLI - Wicklow RNLI's all-weather lifeboat launched shortly before 4pm yesterday afternoon (Wednesday 19 February) to assist a fishing vessel in difficulties off Wicklow Head.

The skipper of the fishing vessel contacted the Irish Coast Guard for assistance after his vessel developed engine failure in a position east of Wicklow Head.

The lifeboat, under the command of coxswain Dave O'Leary, located the fishing vessel twenty-five minutes after launching.

Weather conditions in the area were described as wind direction south easterly, force six to seven with a three metre swell.

A towline was quickly established, but progress with the tow was slow returning back to Wicklow due to wind and tidal conditions.

The fishing vessel with three crew was finally secured safely alongside the Packet pier at Wicklow Harbour at 7.45pm.

Lifeboat crew on the callout were coxswain Dave O'Leary, mechanic Brenda Copeland, Carol Flahive, Brian Sinnott, Tommy Murphy and John Vize.

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#RNLI - Wicklow RNLI was delighted to welcome members of the Wicklow Kilmantin Arts Group, who presented a cheque for €500 to the station last Friday (31 January).

The money was raised during a recent art auction in Wicklow, and the local artists' group wanted some of the proceeds to go to a local charity.

Mary De Courcy, chairperson of the fundraising branch, accepted the generous donation on behalf of the station.

Speaking after the presentation, Wicklow RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Tommy Dover said the station was delighted to receive the gift "especially on SOS Day, one of the RNLI’s main fundraising days."

SOS Day is the annual RNLI crew fundraising day and stations all over the country host innovative and novel ways of fundraising incorporating the SOS initials.

In Northern Irelabd, supporters of Portrush Lifeboat Station jumped into the sea at Portrush Harbour and swam round the station's all-weather lifeboat, the William Gordon Burr.

The weather was bitterly cold but didn’t deter the crowd that turned up to do their bit.

  1. RNLI coxswain Des Austin explained: "This is a fun event that involves our crew, fundraisers, and a great local crowd who turn out irrespective of the weather to support the volunteer lifeboat crew.

"The crew themselves take part and their colleagues and on standby to give them a friendly push and also to haul them in at the end of the swim."

The man with the megaphone for the event was Robin Cardwell, Portrush RNLI lifeboat operations manager. All swimmers were counted out and counted back in again.

The crew thanked Coleraine Borough Council for their use of Waterworld for everyone to get a hot shower after their swim, as well as the RNLI lifeguards and the local coastguard team, who provided safety cover for the event.

After the event everyone was treated to homemade soup and sandwiches in Portrush Yacht Club, and a special SOS cake made by crew member Claudia McAlpin.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#RNLI - Wicklow RNLI's lifeboat crew held their annual Service of Remembrance on New Year’s Day yesterday.

The ceremony remembers past deceased lifeboat volunteers and all associated with the sea from Wicklow, and began with a short religious prayer conducted by Father Donal Roche, who blessed the flowers and wreaths.



After the blessing, coxswain Nick Keogh and the lifeboat crew took the floral tributes out to sea and placed them on the water.

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#RNLI - Wicklow RNLI's all-weather lifeboat launched shortly after 12.20pm on Friday 29 November to go to the assistance of a stranded fishing vessel.

The lifeboat crew located a vessel drifting nine miles south east of Wicklow Head after 1pm. The fishing boat, with four crew, had suffered engine failure and was unable to return to port.

The volunteer crew quickly established a towline and the fishing vessel was taken back to Wicklow harbour. It was brought alongside the East pier just before 3pm.

The crew on the callout were coxswain Nick Keogh, mechanic Brendan Copeland, Ciaran Doyle, Brendan Kavanagh, Carol Flahive, Dean Mulvihill and Graham Fitzgerald.

In other lifeboats news, a presentation was made to recently honour many years of service from five Courtown RNLI lifeboat crew members.

Volunteer lifeboat crew members Orla Woods, Nuala Sinnott, Brian Bergin and Paul Woods were all recognised for their many years of dedicated service to the RNLI at an event in Courtown's Taravie Hotel.

Crewmember Fintan O'Donoghue was also presented with a statuette to mark his many years of selfless volunteering.

O'Donoghue is still a very active member of Courtown lifeboat and is now a deputy launch officer and station mechanic.

All Courtown lifeboat crew members are volunteers and give their time freely to save lives at seas.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#RNLI - Wicklow RNLI went to the assistance of three fishermen whose 36ft fishing boat suffered engine failure near Wicklow Head yesterday afternoon (Sunday 24 November).

The alarm was raised after the crew were unable to start the engine and were concerned about the possibility of their boat being swept ashore.

The Wicklow RNLI all-weather lifeboat launched at 2.30pm under the command of coxswain Ciaran Doyle, followed a few minutes later by the inshore lifeboat.

The drifting fishing vessel was located 10 minutes later about half a mile east of Brides Head. Weather conditions at the time had the wind at a northerly Force 3, with a slight sea state and good visibility.

A towline was quickly established and the stricken vessel was towed back to Wicklow by the lifeboat before 3pm with no further incident.

Much earlier in the day, the Skerries RNLI volunteer crew were tasked to investigate reports of a person in the water in Balbriggan Harbour in the small hours of the morning.

The crew were paged at 12:30am and the lifeboat was launched shortly after with helms Joe May, Conor Walsh and David Knight and crew member Peter Kennedy on board.

There was a Force 3 to 4 northwesterly wind blowing at the time and the sea state was moderate.

The lifeboat proceeded directly to Balbriggan Harbour where it was quickly determined that the person had been taken from the water and was receiving first aid treatment by members of Dublin Fire Brigade and the HSE ambulance service.

The lifeboat then proceeded to carry out a thorough search of the harbour to ensure that there was nobody else in the water before returning to station.

Speaking afterwards, helm Joe May said: "Our volunteer crew are on call 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year. The pager can go off at any time but we are always ready to respond."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#RNLI - It was the end of an era on Friday night 1 November as Wicklow RNLI held a retirement presentation to mark 46 years of service to Wicklow lifeboats by one of its greatest servants, Kit Dunne.

Dunne first became involved with the RNLI way back in 1966. Since then he has served with several different coxswains either as crew or, after taking up the post in 1993, as a deputy launching authority.

Well known in Wicklow Harbour as a pilot, Dunne even came to the aid of the pilot boat when he was aboard the lifeboat JW Archer as a crewman back in 1972.

The 18ft boat had engine failure and with a falling tide was in danger of drifting out to sea when the lifeboat launched to their aid.

Over a period of 27 years, Kit Dunne served the RNLI with distinction. In 1993 he retired from active service but hon secretary Kevin Desmond decided that his common sense experience and loyalty should not be wasted and he was invited to become a deputy launching authority, a position he held until his retirement at the end of last year.

At the retirement presentation, divisional operations manager Owen Medland lauded Dunne's service and dedication over so many years and presented him with a framed certificate of service.

Wicklow RNLI chairman and former coxswain Gerard Haughton also spoke very highly of his time serving with Dunne.

At the very special evening surrounded by family, friends and former colleagues, Dunne was presented with a framed memento of the two lifeboats he had served on, the JW Archer and the Annie Blaker, by Wicklow lifeboat operations manager Des Davitt, who praised him for his outstanding service to his community and the RNLI. He also thanked him for his help and counsel over the last 10 years.

Most important to Dunne was the painting presented to him by his peers. The beautiful artwork, by local artist Pat Dover, was presented by coxswain Nicky Keogh, second coxswain Ciaran Doyle and station mechanic Brendan Copeland on behalf of the crew.

They spoke of the knowledge and experience Dunne has passed down to the new crewmembers over many years. Meanwhile, his son, Kit Jr, told of his pride in his father, who not only served his community but is also a great father and family man.

Kit Dunne thanked all present and told of his great pride in serving such a great organisation as the RNLI. He left the stage to a standing ovation.

In 2005 Dunne was awarded the silver statuette by the RNLI for his service to the institution, but it was clear on the night that he needed no awards or presentations, as his greatest reward was to have served with so many selfless and courageous people over so many years.

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#RNLI - Wicklow RNLI launched its all-weather lifeboat on Monday evening (23 September) at the request of the Irish Coast Guard following a report of a fishing RIB at sea in darkness.

The alarm was raised at 8.35pm when a member of the public contacted the coastguard after passing a small rigid inflatable boat with two men onboard who were fishing near Wicklow Head. Darkness had fallen and the member of the public was concerned for their safety.

The volunteer lifeboat crew conducted a search of the bay, an illumination flare was fired to light up the search area and night vision equipment was also used.

The crew located the small RIB near Wicklow Head using searchlights at 8.48pm but the two men on board said they did not require assistance, and the all-weather lifeboat was stood down shortly before 9pm.

The lifeboat crew on the call-out were coxswain Nick Keogh, mechanic Brendan Copeland and crew members Tom McAulay, Sean Doyle, Dean Mulvihill, Graham Fitzgerald and John Vize.

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Page 10 of 16

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

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