To have a friend in my life like you doesn't mean sailing on a boat without any storms. Rather it means having a boat that can sail in every storm. - Written in 2005 by Babbu Pandu, India

Celebrating Ireland's Floating Heritage

Celebrating Ireland's Floating Heritage

Home arrow Vessels arrow Grand Canal Boats arrow 43M - GCC Canal Boat - Dublin 1928
43M - GCC Canal Boat - Dublin 1928 PDF Print E-mail
22 September 2008
Technical Details


43M in Shannon Harbour
43M in Shannon Harbour (note the cut down hull)

Reg Number:
Built By:
Vickers (Ireland) Ltd
Riveted Steel
61' 6"
13' 3"
60 tons
4' 5.5"
Killaloe 1928
Bolinder E Type, 15 HP
Home Base:


Like most Grand Canal Company boats 43M was used for carrying general cargo on the Grand Canal, River Shannon and River Barrow. 43M with her crew of Banagher Jack (Carroll) and Matt Maloney was the only other Canal Boat on Lough Derg on the first of Dec. 1946, the day that 45M sank. She was carrying a load of oats out of Ballinasloe for Killaloe. As oats are a bulky cargo she could only carry about 43 tonnes of cargo which meant that she was riding higher out of the water than 45M. They had left Portumna early in the morning, hugged the Galway and Clare shore down the lake, tying up at the pier head in Killaloe before 45M made her fateful departure from Garrykennedy.

When the Canal closed down in 1960, 43M along with most of the fleet of boats was sold off at auction. In the 1960's Ted Barrett, who operated a hire boat company on the Grand Canal, bought 43M and made her into a dry dock by firstly cutting down her decks by 6". The operation involved bringing the barge into the lower chamber of the double lock at the 13th lock. The barge was then flooded and allowed to sink to the bottom of the lock. The boat requiring dry docking was then floated in from the top chamber, over the sunken barge and the lock emptied so that the floating boat sat into the sunken barge. The barge hull was then pumped, raising the barge with the boat inside the hull which could then be taken back out of the lock and worked on. Removal from the barge was a reverse of that procedure.

In the early 1970's Gay Boylan bought 43M, fitted an engine and converted her to a house boat. She was involved in the building of the George Spiers harbour in Terryglass during the 1970's and in 1985/86 she was part of the fleet that was responsible for the re-opening of the Woodford river on Lough Derg. 43M was based in Garrykennedy for a good few years but has recently mooved up to Leitrim.

Crew Included-
Around 1942 Paddy Reilly was in charge, Mick Kenny from Lowtown was deck man and Tom Doyle was engineman. Waxer Dunne, Scotsman Connolly, "Red" Willy and Paddy Connolly from Killina also worked on her at different times.

Last Updated ( 03 December 2010 )
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