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Displaying items by tag: Greystones Harbour

Royal Irish Yacht Leuwin skippered by Henry Leonard was the winner of today's Sigma 33 coastal race to Greystones Harbour. Second was September Song skippered by Maurice O'Connell. Third was Dermot Clarke's Gwilli Two.

The race was led by Gwili Two at the Muglins Rock on Dublin Bay with Moonshine a close second but by Bray Head the lead had changed a number of times. By the time the fleet arrived off Greystones the first three boats in the annual 12–miler finished within a minute after 1 hour and 47 minutes of racing. 


Published in Sigma

Minister Simon Harris, officially opened Greystones Sailing Club's new premises on the South Pier in Greystones, County Wicklow this afternoon.

The Club, originally established in 1968, caters for over 350 members and is very much a family club, rooted in the Greystones community. Initially, sailing was confined to Mirror dinghies launched from a rubber mat rolled out on the shingle on North Beach with boats transported to and from the harbour on the tops of cars. The old clubhouse was built in the early 1970’s and has continued to be a part of the Greystones community since then. Now with the opening of the new facility, the club boasts over 100 dinghies and 20 keelboats and has one of the strongest junior sections of any club along the East Coast and is set to grow.

Speaking at the Official opening today, Commodore of Greystones Sailing Club, David Nixon said that “Greystones Sailing Club has moved to new, bigger and better facilities only a few hundred meters from where our club first began. We have moved, but our ethos of a family friendly, community based club still remains as strongly as it was when the club was first developed in the late 60’s. Our aim with our new facilities is to grow sailing in the community and the new clubhouse is the catalyst to drive that through our growing membership. We invite all Greystones families and anyone with an interest in sailing to contact us and see if sailing is for them. We are open for membership to anyone who thinks they might enjoy sailing. No experience is required and we now have a choice of sailing in dinghies and a growing fleet of keelboats who are often looking for crew, no matter how experienced they may be.”

Greystones Sailing Club prides itself as being part of the rich Greystones community and is aimed at family participation at all ages. Over the year's the club has had a huge growth in family membership with an increase of 40% this year compared to last. Greystones Sailing Club has the biggest junior section of any sailing club on the east coast with a programme each summer, that will train up to 200 children of all ages, throughout June, July and August this year. The thriving junior section has been a great lifeline for the club as it is through the junior’s, the club gets the rest of the family hooked – even the parents and adults who never thought they might like sailing, see what fun can be had and how exhilarating it can be.

David added that Greystones Sailing Club “offers any child and adult a sailing experience with our annual open “Try Sail” events where we invite anyone to come sailing and try it out to see if they like it. There is a great social side to the club too, with special food evenings and social events held regularly. We now also have a world class facility of Greystones Harbour Marina on our doorstep, which houses our growing keelboat fleet where 20 keelboats race twice weekly, compared to three years ago when we had just four boats. We are delighted to open our new fantastic facilities today and look forward to welcoming many more families and friends through our doors over the years to come.

Published in Greystones Harbour

Greystones Sailing Club will officially open its new premises on Sunday at 3pm at the new South Pier at Greystones Harbour in County Wicklow. Health Minister Simon Harris TD will perform the official opening.

The Club, originally established in 1968, caters for over 350 members and is very much a family club, rooted in the Greystones community. Initially sailing was confined to Mirror dinghies launched from a rubber mat rolled out on the shingle on North Beach with boats transported to and from the harbour on the tops of cars. The old clubhouse was built in the early 1970’s and has continued to be a part of the Greystones community since then.

Now with the opening of the new facility, the club boasts over 100 dinghies and 20 keelboats and has one of the strongest junior sections of any club along the east coast and, say the club, is set to grow.


Published in Greystones Harbour

#Greystones - Moves are being made to complete developments for five clubs in Greystones Harbour before year's end, as the Wicklow Times reports.

Developer Bridgedale JV recently informed Greystones Municipal District councillors that the €3.5 million facilities are nearing completion after ground was broken in January this year.

The news was welcomed by Cllr Derek Mitchell, who expected the new public square to be completed in June 2016, with a public park to follow in 2019.

This comes after a delay on the development in September over an issue with the transfer of land earmarked for the green space.

Published in Greystones Harbour

Greystones Harbour Master Alan Corr has revealed the latest plans at Ireland's newest coastal marina facility are to include both diesel and petrol pontoons at the 200–berth marina, bringing much needed waterside fuel supplies to the Wicklow coast. 'We are in process of quoting for the pumps, tanks are down and feeder pipes are fed but the final installation is usually the longest process', Corr told

The marina building, will also be starting soon, Corr said.

Published in Greystones Harbour

#Greystones - Greystones Harbour developments have hit another snag, with the project delayed till mid October amid concerns over the transfer of land earmarked for a public green space.

As the Wicklow Times reports, Wicklow County Councillor Jennifer Whitmore called for further deliberation over the proposed transfer of nearly six hectares of land originally part of a planned public park that is "a most important attribute" of the harbour development scheme.

The development company set up by the council claims that the land transfer is an obligation of the PPP contract for the scheme in order to provide for additional housing units, as the previous plans were deemed "commercially unviable".

However, Cllr Whitmore says the changes have essentially "semi-privatised a huge component of the public park. If you are going to be in the park with your children, you will have a whole row of houses looking down on you and you will feel like you're in someone's estate."

Cllr Whitmore also argued that the rationale for increasing the number of housing units no longer stands as the housing market has since reversed its downward trend.

The final decision has been deferred till the October council meeting, following a special meeting on the issue to be held by Greystones Municipal District Council.

Published in Greystones Harbour

Plans to re–run August's abandoned Greystones Cruiser Regatta in October have changed slightly due to a conflict of dates with some sporting fixtures. While Sunday October 4 had been initially slated as the rescheduled date, organiser Daragh Cafferkey now says it will run on Saturday, October 3rd instead. 

'We have been asked to avoid a clash with Sunday's Ireland v Italy Rugby International and accordingly we have opted for Sat afternoon with hopefully enough time for boats to comfortably make it over in the morning', Cafferkey told

The August event attracted over 150 boats.

'We have many trophies, winners jackets, wine and other awards that remain unclaimed and accordingly we will rerun two short races or one longer race on Saturday with a warning signal of 14.25'.

All entries for Aug 30th remain live for this event but the freebee vouchers for burgers or berths are gone but a 50% discount will apply at Greystones Harbour marina.


Published in Greystones Harbour

#greystoneshm –  Expansion plans for extra berths have been accelerated at Wicklow's newest marina at Greystones Harbour.The harbour facility that opened during Easter 2103 (see above vid) is now thriving with full capacity – and above – reached a number of times during the 2015 season. Additional berthing is proposed for 2015 and understands this maybe up to fifty extra berths.

The Greystyones facility is the latest marina to be added to a necklace of marina facilities around the coast.

Bernard Gallagher of Greystones Marina cites the 'massive visitor numbers' at the deep water marina and its fine dining and entertainment options locally, only a Dart ride from Dublin city centre, as major factors in its initial success.

Published in Greystones Harbour
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#GreystonesHarbour - As recently reported on, Wicklow County Councillor Derek Mitchell has made the case for the end of commercial fishing at Greystones Harbour, the future of which is "to be a leisure harbour and visitor destination, not a fishing port." But this was news to new campaign group Save Greystones Fishing Fleet, on behalf of whom Laurel Fiszer Storey writes here about what they maintain is the short-sightedness of abandoning the town's longstanding fishing heritage - and its future generations of fishermen...

It is strange to hear of a change of use of Greystones Harbour, which was not made clear to the public during the planning process, until Fine Gael Councillor Derek Mitchell decided to unveil it to us now. Assuredly, the majority of the community of Greystones will be surprised to hear that Cllr Mitchell has decided to change the nature of their town – a fishing village – with an unbroken cultural heritage of fishing traditions dating back several hundred years, to a ‘leisure port.’

This intended change of use most certainly wasn’t made clear in the Wicklow County Council Environmental Impact Survey prior to the development which states: “After the completion of the project, the Harbour will be more accessible from both mainland and sea… The potential for the area to redevelop its commercial fishing industry will be improved due to the increased accessibility of the Harbour to fishing boats” (EIS, p106).

And again: “The expansion of the Harbour will give increased berthage and the basin will be dredged to allow for the ease of movement of fishing and recreational vessels. The upgrading of the harbour could accommodate a higher number of fishing vessels which creates the potential for increased commercial activity in the Greystones Harbour area. The increase in commercial activity has the potential to have a significant positive effect on the economy of the area.” (EIS, p100).

So it may also come as a surprise to Fine Gael TD Simon Harris, who stated in September that he would “…urge Wicklow County Council to work with the local fishermen to ensure that the new by-laws allow them to continue to make a living in our town. 

"Common sense must prevail and resolve this matter quickly," he said, remarking on the introduction of the harbour bylaws.

Greystones Harbour is big enough to accommodate fishing boats, which is evident from the Wicklow County Council EIS: the one boat owner working full-time out of the harbour when the development commenced shall be accommodated and so should any fishing boat belonging to any person who wishes to fish out of their local harbour. As local fishermen, they have been accommodated here in this fishing community for centuries. Fishing, by nature is generational. Young people – future skippers – work on boats and learn and earn until they have either inherited a boat or saved enough to buy their own.

One of these men was working on that same Greystones boat (‘that should be accommodated’) in Greystones when he was younger. He has now saved enough to buy his own boat and bring it to Greystones, where his family has lived for generations. It simply did not occur to him that his boat would be rejected.

The owner of the last Greystones boat also has a young son and other younger men with their own families working for him. What if they want to run their own boats - will they be rejected too? And what about the local fishermen who lease boats to fish? They should also be accommodated in their own town.

This is how a tradition is passed down, how it grows and provides employment. Anything else is against economic growth, competition and good sense. What if the same reasoning was applied to coffee shops in Greystones pre- and post-development? Or barbers? Or yachts? How many yachts were ‘accommodated’ before the development? Cllr Mitchell’s reasoning on this point is inaccurate, illogical and irrelevant.

The growth in the fishing industry and number of boats in Greystones is not only testament to the viability of the existing fishing grounds and the potential for growth in the commercial fishing industry in the town, but boats also have jobs available, and those jobs belong to Greystones, as do the skills, traditions and heritage of the men on board.

We have such an incredible opportunity here in Greystones for an integrated, functional, attractive and lucrative public amenity, inclusive of yachts, rowers, anglers, watersport enthusiasts, day-trippers and fishermen. Such an amenity naturally attracts tourists who are not only coming to see the yachts, they are coming to for the character of the fishing community: the seaside feel, the fish and chips and gourmet seafood, the seals eating bait fish, the walks, the views, the smells and the ambiance – the cultural heritage.

We have a massive opportunity here if we can work together. One lone fishing boat may not bring enough revenue to pay for the amenities needed to maintain the fishing section of the harbour: electricity points, fresh water, secure storage, waste removal, and access points. However, the more revenue the boats can earn and support each other the better able they are to maintain these areas when they work together with the council.

Naturally, a private company contracted to manage a private marina gains little or no financial benefit from acting as harbour manager to commercial fishing boats. This suggests a conflict of interest with regards to the management of the public and private usages of space. Maybe we need a neutral harbour master to manage this reasonably?

We also have an opportunity to put in the right amenities now to allow the fishermen to operate in a clean, tidy and efficient manner, and to land and distribute fish efficiently. We would urge Wicklow County Council in partnership with the developer to do so immediately.

One way or another, the Greystones fishermen, their families and traditions will continue in Greystones Harbour. Yet they would surely prefer to be out at sea working than having to fight for the right to the use of a public amenity and to safeguard their livelihoods and heritage for future generations.

Published in Greystones Harbour

#Greystones - Greystones Harbour will get its new marine clubhouses in 2015, as the Wicklow Times reported recently.

Wicklow County Council member Derek Mitchell spoke of his delight at progress being made after a meeting with developer Sisk in late September.

Previously Cllr Mitchell was behind the call to fast-track the construction of clubhouse facilities for the various bodies that use the harbour.

"I have been asking or this and am very pleased that there is a commitment to restart and give free clubhouses to five organisations," he said.

The organisations in question are the local community clubs for sea scouts, rowers, divers, anglers and sailors. Work on their clubhouses is set to begin in January with completion by the end of 2015 at the latest.

In addition, Wicklow TD and Minister for the OPW, Simon Harris, expects a new coastguard building to be constructed from the beginning of 2015.

As of yet no timeline has been set by Sisk for the completion of the rest of the harbour after work stalled many months ago.

Meanwhile, Cllr Mitchell has emphasised that commercial fishing at Greystones Harbour is no longer feasible as its focus shifts to recreational and residential use.

Writing in the Wicklow Voice on 30 October, he outlined the challenges of space in the Wicklow town's harbour that preclude commercial fishing and recreational functions working side by side.

"The overall benefit to the 18,000 people in Greystones is for [the harbour] to be a leisure harbour and visitor destination, not a fishing port."

Cllr Mitchell compared the significant contemporary use of the harbour area by locals leisure boating, partaking in watersport and walking the new pier promenade to the lone person fishing full time from the old harbour before its closure.

"A number of other people may claim to be local fishermen but until two months ago none are listed as having a fishing licence (a Certificate of Registry for Sea Fishing Boat).

"This is required to land and sell fish so they were not commercial fishermen and have not been disadvantaged," he added.

Published in Greystones Harbour
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