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Celebrating Ireland's Floating Heritage

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Home arrow Vessels arrow Grand Canal Boats arrow 32E - GCC Canal Boat - Dublin 1926
32E - GCC Canal Boat - Dublin 1926 PDF Print E-mail
16 October 2008

A boatman takes the tiller of 45M

A boatman takes the tiller of 45M, adopts the stance, and takes a trip down memory 'canal' - taken at the boatman's reunion, Banagher 2006

32E was built as 32M by Ross & Walpole in 1926, for the Grand Canal Company, as a motorised general cargo boat capable of taking up to 50 Tons. The 15hp Bolinder installed was recovered from one of the original converted horse boats which had been decommissioned with the new fleet coming on stream. Like 31M it was a one-off prototype design that experimented with a wedged shaped bow & stern and became known as the "Diamond" boat.

Her hull profile caused difficulties with steering from the start, making her an unpopular boat amongst the boat crews. She "wouldn't go anywhere fast no matter what you did to her". "She was difficult to steer, one time while being towed on the Barrow, the Tug went through one arch in Goresbridge and 32M went through a different arch". Her design problems ensured that she was transferred to the Maintaince Department for other duties and became known as 32E. Here they cut the bow section down to the waterline to accommodate a Priestman Dredger which operated successfully for many years into the 1980's.

A "portacabin" was installed as crew accommodation in the hold which was covered over with steel to make it vandal proof.

32E has not been used as a dredger for quite some time and currently lies under water at the Waterways Ireland Maintenance Depot in Tullamore Harbour. The Priestman dredger has long since gone.
 

Last Updated ( 03 December 2010 )
 
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