Waterways Ireland has responsibility for many of the buildings associated with the inland navigable waterways of Ireland. Taken together, all these structures represent a very substantial built heritage resource and examples of local building techniques, skills and vernacular architecture associated with the development of the waterways of Ireland. In recent years there has been increasing recognition of the contribution such buildings make to an area and also the importance of considering their use going into the future.
Waterways Ireland commissioned ACP to undertake a study of potential hubs along four of its waterways – Shannon, Barrow, Grand Canal and Royal Canal. An initial review identified 66 sites and structures along the waterways that merited further investigation. This was reduced to 15 which were visited and inspected by ACP ecological and building conservation staff and from this review a final 4 hubs were agreed for further study. The hubs were assessed in detail by ACP and costed proposals were developed for each of the hubs. Additional studies were undertaken on the Killaloe Canal stores and Quays and Locks.