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Displaying items by tag: Waterways Ireland

Waterways Ireland has temporarily closed service blocks across its all-island network of inland waters as of today, Thursday 22 October.

The move is in line with the latest coronavirus control measures announced by both the Northern Ireland Executive and the Irish Government.

Pump-out facilities remain available for use but owners must ensure that travel to these facilities is done in a responsible manner, minimising the amount of essential movement out on the water.

In the Republic of Ireland, all service blocks, locks and bridges are closed for at least the next six weeks.

Waterways users on both sides of the border are advised that no unnecessary travel should be undertaken at this time.

Boaters in the Republic of Ireland are additionally reminded that essential travel and exercise is only permitted up to 5km from home.

Travel further than 5km to check on vessels moored on the navigation is expressly prohibited until further notice.

The five-day mooring rule suspension on the Shannon Navigation and Shannon-Erne Waterway has been extended to 31 October with no additional cost.

Towpath users are also reminded of the need to observe social distancing and other Level 5 restrictions.

Waterways Ireland’s message to all waterways users continues to be ‘please stay at home’.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises that essential maintenance works at Dromod Harbour on the Shannon Navigation in Co Leitrim are due to commence this Thursday 15 October and run until Friday 27 November.

All on-site services, including water and pump-out facility, will be disconnected for the duration of these works.

Pedestrian access around the marina will also be restricted.

Vessel access to the old harbour will not be effected, though pedestrian access from it will be restricted at times.

Published in Inland Waterways

Owners of boats without permits on the Barrow Line of the Grand Canal and the Barrow Navigation face the removal of their vessels by Waterways Ireland later this month.

They are among the boats in contravention of bye-laws that will be taken from these inland waterways from Monday 26 October.

Others include vessels that appear abandoned, are double moored and/or causing obstruction (sunk) or are deemed to be or likely to cause a hazard to navigation, as per the Canal Act 1986 (Bye-Laws) 1988.

Owners of boats on the Royal Canal have been similarly advised of plans to remove non-permitted, abandoned or obstructing vessels from Monday 9 November.

Similar to last month’s planned boat removal on the Grand Canal, affected vessels have been stickered with warning notices, given suitable access, and owners — where known — have been contacted, Waterways Ireland says.

This story was updated on Wednesday 14 November with additional details about Royal Canal boat removals.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland has suspended the five-day mooring rule until late October in the wake of the country’s move to Level 3 coronavirus restrictions.

As of this past Wednesday 7 October, the rule — which prohibits vessels from mooring in one spot for more than five days — has been suspended across Ireland's inland waterways for a three-week period until Tuesday 27 October, at which point restrictions will be reviewed.

Shortly after this, the winter mooring period commences on Sunday 1 November and owners of vessels can apply for permits at the Waterways Ireland website.

All locks, bridges and facilities on the Shannon Navigation and Shannon-Erne Waterway remain open at the scheduled times with the exception of Portora Lock in Enniskillen, which will be temporary closed to boat traffic from 9am to 5pm next Wednesday 14 October for essential maintenance.

Masters of vessels and waterways users in the Republic are also reminded that in accordance with Level 3 restrictions, non-essential travel outside your home county is not allowed at present.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises all users of the Grand Canal in Co Offaly that the southern tow path from Plunkett Bridge at Pollagh to Turraun — half-way between Tullamore and Shannon Harbour — will be closed from next Monday 12 October until 1 March 2021 for the construction of a new path and cycleway along that stretch of the inland waterway.

Published in Inland Waterways

Navigation in or out of the Dublin on the Royal Canal is currently suspended until the completion of works on three separate lock gates.

Waterways Ireland says repair and upgrading works are required at Lock 12 in Castleknock, Lock 10 in Ashtown and the Spencer Dock Sea Lock.

Passage through the city on the Northside inland waterway will remain closed until such time as these works are completed and the locks are again operational.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises masters and owners of vessels that low water levels exist on the upstream approaches to Meelick and Victoria Lock on the Shannon Navigation.

Water levels are currently up to 39cm below summer levels in these areas due to a draw-down from the open sluices at Meelick Weir, similar to the advisory from July of this year.

Masters of vessels, particularly those with deep drafts, are advised to navigate with additional caution and to remain within the navigation at all times.

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland is encouraging the public to explore its more than 350km of waterside trails on National Walking Day this Sunday, 27 September.

First held last year, National Walking Day is taking place on trails, towpaths and beaches as well as parks and GAA clubs across the country — anywhere people can get out and walk.

More than a million people lie within 10km of a waterway managed by Waterways Ireland, which adds that having off-road walking trails within easy access is a huge asset for communities for how they benefit people’s mental and physical health and well-being.

GetIrelandWalking.ie lists walking events and walking groups that are participating in National Walking Day so you can walk with others if you don't want to strike out alone.

But the main point of National Walking Day is to get people to integrate walking into their everyday activity, and going the more than 3.1 million regular walkers in Ireland — a number that’s only grown during the coronavirus situation.

“With the provision of our Blueway and Greenway trails, we have now created even more locations for people to get out and walk in their local area,” says Waterways Ireland’s Sharon Lavin.

“The Royal Canal Greenway will launch later this year and this will be the latest in a range of greenway options available in Ireland.

“It will be the longest of its kind, stretching for 130km from Maynooth to Longford town and Cloondara alongside the tranquil and historic Royal Canal.”

Published in Inland Waterways

Waterways Ireland advises all masters and users of the Royal Canal that canoe polo events will take place in the vicinity of the harbour in Mullingar this weekend, 27-28 September and the following Sunday, 4 October.

Boat movements in the area will be restricted on the inland waterway for the duration of the events. Masters of vessels should navigate the area with caution and comply with guidance from marshals.

Further information may be obtained from Mullingar Harbour Canoe Polo at 086 244 62 20.

Published in Watersport

Waterways Ireland advises all masters of vessels and water users on Lough Derg to proceed with caution moving in or out of Mountshannon as the green navigation marker for the western side of Cribby Island is currently off station.

Lough Derg has seen a rise in rescue callouts to cruisers in distress over recent weeks amid a boom in the Shannon cruiser hire industry driven by late summer ‘staycations’ on the waterways, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

Published in Cruising
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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. 

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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