As well as enjoying our waterways, the IWAI promote the restoration and maintenance of every navigable waterway on this island. Along the eastern canals, this has included the campaign to keep the Grand Canal open when threatened with closure in the 1960s. We celebrated the opening of the regenerated Royal Canal in 2010 after a thirty-year campaign and voluntary work by the Royal Canal Amenity Group and latterly, by Waterways Ireland. Major dredging on the Dublin stretch of the Grand Canal was finally started in 2010 and dredging on the Barrow Line is nearing completion.
Kildare IWAI, founded in 1984, is a group of volunteers promoting the use, maintenance, protection, restoration and improvement of Kildare’s waterways.
Kildare IWAI covers the waterways from Lock 12 at Newcastle Road to Lock 20 at Ticknevin on the Grand Canal Main Line, the Naas and Corbally Branch, the Milltown Feeder and south on the Barrow Line as far as Lock 22 at Glenaree. On the Royal Canal, Kildare IWAI has an interest from Confey near Leixlip west to Kilcock.
At their AGM in 1984, the founders outlined their aims that included improving facilities in Lowtown and Robertstown, opening the Milltown Feeder to navigation and assisting Dublin IWAI and the OPW with the restoration of the Naas Branch of the Grand Canal. The campaign continues today for the removal of the culvert blocking the Corbally/Herbertstown Branch in Kildare.
To this day, we continue to organise and engage in many water and land based activities highlighting and involving local communities and our neighbouring IWAI members in Dublin, North Barrow and Offaly.
In 2016, we are striving to safeguard the future of the Grand Canal, the Royal Canal and the Barrow Navigation through Carlow, Dublin, Kildare, Kilkenny, Laois, Longford, Meath, Offaly and Westmeath, by the introduction of fair Byelaws for all users.
IWAI promote safety on the water and the wearing of an appropriate PFD – see