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Displaying items by tag: Royal Canal Amenity Group

Shannonside FM reports that veteran inland waterways campaigner Dr Ian Bath has died aged 90.

Beginning in the 1970s, Dr Bath led the charge to revive the Royal Canal between Dublin and the River Shannon as a tourism amenity.

Through the efforts of Dr Bath and other volunteers in the Royal Canal Amenity Group, 74km of the waterway between Blanchardstown and Mullingar were reopened to navigation by 1990.

And another 20 years on, in October 2010, some months after Dr Bath’s history of the canal with Ruth Delany was published, the full length of the canal from the Shannon to the Liffey was officially reopened — an achievement for which Dr Bath was recognised with Afloat’s Sailor of the Month award for December 2010.

Shannonside FM has more on the story HERE.

Published in Inland Waterways

The President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, will commemorate the Royal Canal's 200th Anniversary in the presence of Waterways Ireland, the Royal Canal Amenity Group and invited guests in Clondra, Co Longford on the 27th May 2017. The event takes place on the anniversary of the day when the canal was completed all the way to the Shannon in 1817.

The Royal Canal closed in 1950 and remained closed for 50 years. The extensive lobbying and volunteer work of the Royal Canal Amenity Group and the work of Waterways Ireland staff and their predecessors in OPW was rewarded in 2010 when the Canal was reopened to navigation.

President Higgins has been a significant supporter of the Royal Canal and the inland waterways for many years. As Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands, the President drove the re-vitalisation of the canal networks, including the redevelopment of the Royal Canal.

Now a vibrant recreational location, investment by Waterways Ireland and Longford County Council in conjunction with Fáilte Ireland has revitalised Richmond Harbour, Clondra, now a Blueway hub. Additional investment by local authority partners along the length of the Royal Canal has seen the upgrade of the towpath to international trails standard. Only a short section in Co Longford remains to be upgraded before the entire 144km towpath can be promoted internationally.

Dawn Livingstone Waterways Ireland Chief Executive spoke saying "I am delighted that the Royal Canal Commemorations will be honoured by the presence of President Higgins. The volunteers and staff worked so hard to reopen this navigation. They have provided a valuable service to the people of Ireland by their fight to keep this wonderful recreational amenity in public hands. As a result it is here providing opportunities for every community to freely use for work, visit, play and thrive"

Should people wish to attend the commemorations on the 27th May, they are welcome to come to the harbour. The village will be closed to traffic from early on the day and so invited guests should park in Tarmonbarry where a small coach will bring them to and from the harbour.

Attendees can expect to see the unveiling of commemorative plaques, traditional crafts and special arrivals by boat and horse & cart. Following the speeches, walkers from Irish Famine Trust at Strokestown House will set off to walk to Dublin in the steps of the 1490 people who left the Mahon Estate to walk to Dublin and the boat to America 175 years ago this week. Music will be provided by the Garda Band who will perform on the quayside.

Published in Inland Waterways
Waterways Ireland celebrated the completion of the restoration of the Main Line of the Royal Canal on the inland waterways today. Celebrations began at 2pm in Richmond Harbour, Clondra, Co Longford. The official part of the event at 2pm involved the arrival of a flotilla of boats, short speeches, music and a reception This weekend there is a two day festival organised by the Clondra Branch of the Royal Canal Amenity Group.
Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland in conjunction with a working committee will mark the completion of the main line of the Royal Canal on the inland waterways with an event that will take place in Richmond Harbour, Clondra, Co. Longford on the 1st October as part of a weekend of festivities. This event is the culmination of not only 36 years of campaigning by the Royal Canal Amenity Group (RCAG) but a summer of waterside events moving East to West; boaters and waterside communities have been celebrating the reawakening of the Royal Canal each weekend leading up to the main event.

The formal event will take place on October 1st at 2pm, with a flotilla of boats arriving into Richmond Harbour. The flotilla will include boats from each branch of the RCAG as well as the Heritage Boat Association, Inland Waterways Association of Ireland, the supporters of the Canal d'Nivernais, representatives of the Wilderness Boats. The flotilla will be lead by Royal Canal Barge no 3 (also known as the Killucan Barge). The formal event will be followed by a weekend of celebrations organised by the Clondra Branch of the RCAG and supported by Waterways Ireland. The weekend festivities are open to all.

The Royal Canal is a highly significant and historic public amenity. 145.6km long, the Royal Canal stretches from Dublin to the Shannon passing through Dublin, Kildare, Meath, Westmeath and Longford. 1.2 million people live within this catchment making the Royal Canal one of the largest public amenities on the island.

Published in Inland Waterways

The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

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At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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