A sight to behold is promised on the canal in Vicarstown Laois this weekend

Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Lynda Kiernan

Email:

lynda.kiernan@leinsterexpress.ie

A sight to behold is promised on the canal in Vicarstown Laois this weekend

One of the barges from the Heritage Boat Association

For anybody with an interest in boats, there is only one place to be in Laois this weekend.

This Friday April 7, a flotilla of vintage barges will moor in Vicarstown to enjoy a weekend of local sightseeing.

The stop is organised by the Heritage Boat Association who are bringing the flotilla along the Grand Canal, down the Barrow and on to Waterford.

The owners will be around to answer questions from the public about the boats' fascinating history.

"Because of the boats' size and draft they only go down the Barrow every 4 years or so. They are lovely to look at. The oldest boat amongst the flotilla is 4B and dates back to 1912. These barges plied their trade up and down the waterways until 1960 when rail and road took over," explains Orla from Barrowline Cruises in Vicarstown, who have a warm welcome planned for the crews.

"The captains and their mates will be attending the traditional Irish music session in Crean’s Vicarstown Inn on Friday night and are looking forward to visiting the Steam Museum in Stradbally on Saturday 8. They will enjoy more live music in Vicarstown on Saturday night. They plan on leaving Vicarstown on Sunday 9," she said, inviting the public to come along and meet them.