Welcome to the website of the Newry & Portadown branch of the Inland Waterways Association of Ireland (IWAI). We have the longterm ambition of restoring the Newry canal and once again joining Carlingford Lough with Lough Neagh. The branch has already begun to conserve and restore the waterway with our regular work parties. Volunteers have been removing trees and vegetation from the lock chambers so that the still impressive craftsmanship and architecture can be better appreciated by the public. We have lobbied locally and nationally to have restoration of the canal placed on the political agenda. The branch has successfully applied for funding for projects to increase public awareness of the canal and to encourage the various waterside communities to become part of our cause.
Our future plans are to continue to lobby and campaign; to fund raise and apply for grants; to maintain and conserve the architecture and industrial heritage of the canal and to continue our voluntary groundwork. We are also lobbying for Waterways Ireland to take over the Newry to Portadown Canal as being the best way to have the canal re-opened
Our Facebook recent posts
PADDLING AT SCARVA: Great fun on the canal this morning with paddlers from as far away as Coalisland joining us to savour spring on the water. We really are lucky ducks to have such a wonderful adventure playground in our area. Thanks to everyone who came along. Some are still out there paddling their way to Newry with Banbridge Kayak and Canoe Club Newry and Mourne Sea-kayaking and Canoe Club Moya Stewart Kate Millar Peter Maxwell Tanya Duffy Patrick Watson Brian Cunningham
FISHING ON THE CANAL: It’s great to see the canal being used for a range of activities and it looks as if Sunday’s Ulster Open Pairs Championship on the Ship Canal was a very successful event. Our branch member and former chairman Oliver McGauley is president of the national federation and works tirelessly to promote the canal as a fishing destination. Congratulations to Newry Coarse Fish Angling Club and everyone involved.
DON’T FORGET: Next Saturday is our boat rally gathering at Scarva from 9.30. Almost 2 miles of canal to paddle (4 mile round trip) Come and join us even if you don’t have a boat of your own we can maybe get you a seat in one for a duck’s eye view of the canal. The navvies have been out in our boat trimming overhanging branches for yis all. Tell your friends
POYNTZPASS WALL: Another lobbying success for IWAI. After we discovered the hole in the wall at Poyntzpass we lobbied the ABC Council to have it repaired and lo and behold our wishes have been granted and Council have repaired the wall. We need to keep up the lobbying of Councils and other statutory agencies for them to continue to carry out improvements and maintenance along the canal. Moneypenny’s cill and summit dredging next hopefully!!!
BOAT RALLY: Calling all canoes and small boats. You are invited to an informal celebratory gathering at Scarva on Saturday morning 30th April from 9.30am. We would like as many vessels as possible to come and test the waters of the canal. Such a lot of work has gone into improving the waterway over the last winter and we want to encourage everyone to feel the canal belongs to them. Using the canal is the most effective way of lobbying for additional investment by the ABC Council. So put the date in your diary now and tell your friends to get afloat with us.
SURVEYING LOUGH NEAGH: It’s the time of year for messing about in boats and some of the navvies have been afloat at the Bann Foot recently testing the charts made last year which show a permanent channel through the mud banks. They have also started surveying at Maghery in anticipation of the planned canoe Blueway.