On leaving Shannonbridge we retraced our route for home and made a detour to the attractive Shannon Harbour. A place that holds fond memories for me of my early time in Ireland, for here I would visit and take a relaxing stroll along it’s banks to look at what floats in its waters. I loved and still love the sense of an ambiguous freedom that glides above the surface to permeate the very air that we breathe.
Shannon Harbour built in 1803 is the terminus for Grand Canal which starts in Dublin and connects to the River Shannon via a lock at the western end. The GC whose waters were once used for making Guinness, also provided a means of transporting the great beverage to all hostelries en route to and including the City of Limerick. On their return journey they would bring back various cargoes such as turf (peat), potatoes and other goods.
All types of craft moor here including a few
English narrow boats.
I have to admit to being intrigued by the name of this boat
SLY FOX which I think might have been named by a woman.
This beautiful yacht bears the name of famous Irish woman Granuaile also known as known as The Pirate Queen Gráinne Ní Mháille or Grace O’Malley in English (c 1530- 1603)
The narrow boat SNOWBALL in the dry dock being prepared for bottom blacking.
I could not quite work out as to what the thumb-stick was for because he
seemed to be quite able to walk.
The Irish canal barges were 80 feet long by 17 feet-1 inch wide and made of iron and later of steel. Today the remaining barges have been converted into houseboats.
The first or the last road bridge over the Grand Canal, depending on which end you count from !