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. In 2015 we manufactured and installed two sets of lock gates at Poyntzpass and near Scarva. 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
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Spotted this morning! The first bumblebee queen this year visiting our Bee Garden at Moneypenny’s Lock. With the very cold weather recently there are hardly any flowers in the countryside for the queen bees to get their vital supplies of nectar after hibernation. Last year the ABC Council donated lots of crocus bulbs to our garden and this bumblebee was certainly making good use of them today. Hopefully she’ll survive.
A perfect spring morning to start our weekly bike rides along the towpath. Just a reminder – IWAI members from all branches are very welcome to join us in Scarva at 9,30am every Tuesday. And, in case you think you won’t be able to keep up, we go at a nice steady pace to suit all fitness levels! Our thanks as always to the Southern Health Trust for providing the bicycles , helmets etc.
The snow is nearly away but some icebergs have been spotted in the canal near Jerrettspass.
And now here are some pictures of Poyntzpass during this exceptional March weather…
Everyone seems to have stayed at home today. Look what they were missing along the towpath…
Sun, snow and ice along river and canal.