Boats Ah

Having bumped clattered across rough tracks canal towpath and other unwelcoming vistas I decided to buy a boat. I had a small work van which was empty most of the time and I thought an inflatable would be the most convenient so I set about buying one and enabling me to reach those oft items

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Childhood Memories of The Brosna

I was born in 1937 in the townland of Coole. Coole is about a mile East of Ferbane in the County of Offaly. Our house is about two hundred- and fifty-yards from the River Brosna and our pasture went to the river. From the time I was able to walk I followed my two older

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Edenderry Canal Breach 1989

The Edenderry canal breach, 1989 Something was happening but throughout Edenderry people continued on their daily grind. We tramped home from school in good humour as the newness of our Christmas toys sustained the mundaness of January. But near the Blundell Aqueduct, that remarkable engineering feat where the canal passes over the road, farmers grumbled.

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Do You Remember That Shannon Noght

We knew it was time to pack up and go home, but it was Midsummer’s Eve on the Shannon, and how could we leave? And so we hummed gently upriver from Banagher in that last, long live glow from the West, as a slim, slight moon hung above us -waiting. Engine cut, we drifted in

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My Grandfather’s Story When He Was A Boy

Grandfather arrived in Tullamore when he was three years old in 1931. He lived in a house in a place called Kevin’s Street known locally as Lumpur Lane. In 1932 he remembers the Eucharistic congress and all the flags and bunting out all around the town. He also remembers going to meet the funeral of

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Paddy Cantwell

My name is Paddy Cantwell and I have been living all of my 87 years here in Aughadonagh, Rahan next to the Blue Drain and the ‘Three Rivers’, where the Clodagh and the Silver Rivers meet. I would like to explain how the excess water from Aughadonagh and Tully got into the river before the

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The Bridge over the river

According to myself, Im something of a poet on the side. More of the folk poetry tradition more than the established kind, the local River Shannon has seen me cominsing a few verses from time to time while passing its banks. One verse in particular, which I wrote when quite young, in my teens, is

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The Coffin on the Black Bridge

Written by x after interviewing Mick Devery The ‘Three Rivers’, site of the Black Bridge on the river Brosna Pollagh is a village in the bogs of County Offaly, nestled between two waterways: the river Brosna and the Grand Canal, both central to its story. The canal arrived in the early 1800s along with the

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The Grand Canal

My nearest body of water is the Grand Canal. I lived at the 21st Lockhouse, Ballycommon for many years. My Grandad, James Fisher, is the lock keeper at this lock and I have many special memories of helping him open locks and put boats through. Locks are essential when the canal flows through territory which

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The Barrow Pike

Heavy with spawn, she rested below Athy’s Horsebridge. Melodies of a distant shoal drifted by. An old familiar tune, dancing Rudd. Moving upriver, she took advantage of the competing swirls, navigating from reed-bed to rock till she glimpsed the first flickers of fin and dived for cover. She lay perfectly still and peered from the

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When the Barrow is your Playground

Jam jar in hand off to the river for the day. “Be back in time for dinner” the mother would say. Swin suit, old shoes when the sun was in place. Thinking I’d change colour with one more freckle on my face! Time meaning nothing, creating a minnow farm was the game. Called to a

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