Inland Waterways

Inland Waterways Content

Ireland’s inland waterways are important parts of our transport and industrial heritage. They hold aesthetic, recreational and spiritual values, as well as important habitats for many forms of wildlife.

Boat-Wash Literature Review

The impact of boat-wash on the natural and cultural heritage of Ireland’s waterways was identified as an important issue in the Waterway Corridor Studies carried betweeen 2001 and 2006. To further investigate this, in 2006 the Heritage Council commissioned Hydraulics & Maritime Research Centre UCC to undertake a Literature Review on research carried out to date and current practice in relation to boat-wash.

The specific impacts examined were:

  • Ecological impact - terrestrial and aquatic flora and fauna, and terrestrial and aquatic habitats;
  • Cultural heritage impact - underwater archaeology, and upstanding archaeological structures such as crannógs, landing places, harbours, piers and bridges from medieval times to the mid-20th century;
  • Hydro-morphological impact - river and canal channels, river and canal banks, different soil types to assess their susceptibility to erosion, sediment mobilisation and depositional patterns, navigational and engineering structures.

This review provides an overview of the findings, methodologies and mitigation strategies used elsewhere. It will inform a second stage of research involving field study at a later stage.

Download the Boat Wash Literature Review (2006)[pdf 1.5mb].