Tag Archives: bollard

RVRC joy at Portumna

Our friends in the Recreational Vehicle Rights Campaign tell us that they are happy to see that Waterways Ireland has received conditional planning permission for improvements at Portumna Castle Harbour:

The development will consist of the refurbishment of existing harbour area including re-decking of existing mooring fingers with the provision of new service bollards. Refurbishment of existing service block providing disabled toilet and shower facilities. Resurfacing of the existing vehicle parking area incorporating a new facility to accommodate a serviced area for recreational vehicles. Gross floor space refurbishment 73.38sqm.

WI said, as part of its submission, that “a new water supply to be metered and installed in accordance with the requirements and standards of Irish Water and GCC [Galway County Council]”. For wastewater, “Established system whereby a holding tank is regularly maintained and emptied/treated in Portumna WWTP”. WI had to submit a full Natura Impact Assessment.

The eight conditions seem to be fairly harmless but they include a requirement that WI install three bat boxes and another that WI has to show how public lighting will provide for both public safety and the desires of our feathered friends, the bats and the various creepy crawlies around the place.

The disused pumpout in the first bay to the left as you enter will be replaced by a “Hoist for disabled access to boats”; the working pumpout on the entrance (aka the barge berth) will be replaced and “connected to existing foul pumping main”.

The isolated dolphins, which were practically impossible to tie to, will be integrated into the finger jetties, which will be covered by timber surface and cladding. Some mooring bollards will be removed; the fingers will have cleats for mooring, while service bollards will supply shore power, light and water. However, the berths along the wall at the north end will have only light and water. CCTV is to be installed.

There will be spaces for 18 camper vans (RVs), with light, water and power available. There will also be a “New ticket kiosk for RV parking”; I don’t know how that is to be managed or any restrictions on numbers are to be enforced.

Fáilte Ireland is to pay for this out of its Lough Derg Stimulus Fund.

The mystery of the missing bollard

Boaters on Lough Derg were shocked today to realise that a key part of the lake’s infrastructure, the corner bollard at Dromaan, had gone missing.

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The vanished bollard

There it was gone

“We didn’t know it was there until it was gone,” said a weeping cruiser-owner. “Without that bollard, the outer berth on the right-hand side is useless: you can’t tie a boat there. And the middle berth is useless too. Two whole berths gone. With so many other spaces taken by harbour-hoggers and abandoned vessels, we’ll end up tying off barges or something.”

Sergeant Pluck of Whitegate said: “Is it about a bicycle?” Later, Superintendent Clohessy, from Tipp, admitted that he was baffled. The theft of a bollard had not previously been recorded. It was, he said, a quare conundrum and a right pancake.

Waterways Ireland has not commented on the matter.


A load of old bollards

Our London Correspondent reports that the latest and most fashionable souvenir to go on sale there is a reproduction cast-iron “paperweight/doorstop/bookend based on the mooring bollards of Regents Canal”. Available in black or fluorescent red, these items were designed by a designer who was being worked with by another chap who was commissioned by a Creative Agency. The result is a “desirable antidote to the overly-commercial, tacky souvenirs” available elsewhere, it says here.

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A bollard at Meelick

Well, that’s nice. Maybe Waterways Ireland could commission the same creative types to design a range of reproductions of Irish waterways bollards; folk could be encouraged to collect the entire set.

But one minor drawback does strike me. The artistic merits of these reproduction bollards are of course obvious, but as souvenirs they have one minor drawback. A souvenir is something you buy, while on holiday, to take home to someone else. Nowadays, the steamer services are not what they once were and many folk travel on these new-fangled flying-machines. But according to that nice Mr O’Leary, who operates some such machines, you may take only 10 kg of cabin baggage. These bollards, though, weigh about 1.5 kg each, which rather limits the number of bollards you can carry as souvenirs.

Waterman, spare that tree!

I and others have commented on WI’s cutting of trees along the banks of the Grand Canal. One aspect that didn’t strike me until today is that, if you didn’t remove waterside trees, you wouldn’t be able to insert new mooring posts.

Above Lock 34

Above Lock 34

Looking back up from the lock

Looking back up from the lock


Close-up of reed-cutting tractor

Close-up of reed-cutting tractor


Below Lock 34

Below Lock 34

Compared with the old black and white bollards, the new lack a certain je ne sais quoi, but I suppose they could be painted if people paid up.

Towpath: legal case about access

The Irish Times has a report here.

Drum on the Lagan

I was introduced to two places on the Lagan Navigation last weekend. The first was Drum Bridge; here is a page about it.

Saleen Pier

It’s a long way from Trinity College, Dublin to the pier at Saleen on Ballylongford Creek, on the south side of the Shannon Estuary. But the college owned large amounts of land in the area, including bogs, and turf was one of the cargoes exported from Ballylongford. There was a battery on Carrig Island at the mouth of the creek and a Coast Guard Station at Saleen Pier, which was built by the Commissioners for the Improvement of the Navigation of the Shannon. Read more about Saleen here.