Photos taken on 19 February 2011
This development is significant for two reasons.
It is the first formal acknowledgement by Waterways Ireland that people do live on boats, including boats on the canals. Many years ago I asked Waterways Ireland what residential boaters in Hazelhatch, Sallins and Lowtown were to do with their sewage; I was told that they should make their own arrangements, and that it was none of Waterways Ireland’s business. It will be harder to cater for those three areas than for Shannon Harbour, but this is a good first step.
More generally, it is (I think) the first time that Waterways Ireland has directly provided year-round moorings for individual boaters (as opposed to making spaces available for first-comers, and as opposed to allowing people to use berths in harbours on the Shannon in the winter months). I do not know what management scheme Waterways Ireland has in mind, or how it proposes to charge for the facilities, but this is a welcome new development.
Here is the website of the new Irish Residential Boatowners Association.