Kilgarvan Angling Club presentation – June 29th 2013

Kilgarvan Angling Club, on Lough Derg, invited the CSIG to talk to them about the project at their monthly meeting; Les Saunders was delighted to make a presentation.  There was huge interest in the work of the CSIG and a very lively question and answer session.

Offers of help were made and more interestingly, a recognition of some of the advantages of becoming a member of the IWAI.  The IWAI is likely to acquire a few more members as a result.

Athlone IWAI presentation and support – June 14th 2013

On June 14th, in the Lough Ree Yacht Club, Pat McManus and Les Saunders gave their latest presentations to Athlone IWAI members and a number of guests, who asked to attend the meeting. Les started with an overview of the CSIG and continued with a walk through of the charts and overlays as they are today. Pat showed his latest chart with high definition and detail of the area around Hare Island, the result of over 240 hours of surveying. This chart will be of particular interest to anglers and divers, as well as general users of the charts.

There was great interest from the audience and lively discussions took place after the presentation and indeed continued in the bar of the Lough Ree Yacht Club until the small hours. However, the marvellous surprise that night, was the commitment by Athlone IWAI to provide the CSIG with a cheque for €3,500 to help in funding the group. The CSIG is very grateful to Athlone members for this contribution, which will enable us to purchase new software and equipment to continue our research.

There were many nice comments on the night, but the one that had the most impact was when the CSIG was described as “continuing the efforts that were started by Harry Rice, albeit with more modern equipment”, and “if he was alive today, he would be a leading light in the group”.

The next step is to present to the IWAI Executive with our proposal for matching funds.

Royal & Grand – researching and photographing

In March 2013, Graham Liddy of the Charts Special Interest Group (CSIG) set out from Richmond Harbour with the objective of creating an accurate tracklog of both the Royal and Grand Canals.  As of the end of May, he has surveyed much of the canals as far as Landestown in Kildare on the Grand Canal and over the next few weeks will complete the surveying project to Shannon Harbour.

Up to this point, we have not had available to us accurate positions on the canals, the OSI charts are county by county and do not overlap, the IWAI charts are a stylised indication of where places and objects are located.  Once the surveying part of this programme is complete, the mappers will create charts with accurate positioning for both waterways.

An addendum to the charts will be overlays, showing photos of specific places, pieces of history, information on people who have or have had an interest in the canals, places to visit for a day out as you travel the canal and much more.  In other words, the resulting charts will be of benefit to a wide audience including boaters, walkers, cyclists, tourists, rescue services, local authorities and all who work and play along and close to the canal system.

Work has started on collating, researching and documenting information for the overlays in the Kildare area.  We would welcome anyone who can lend a hand in researching and collating information and producing photos for the other counties along both the Royal and the Grand.

If you are interested in joining this exciting Irish waterways project, you can contact the Charts Special Interest Group at