The harbour at Kinvara embraces Galway Bay, containing its waters along the fringe of the village. When you round the bend at Seamount College it presents itself, postcard perfect. We used to swim there, even had competitions – the most notable being the Green Island swim – a race from the pier to the small patch of green outside the Doctor’s surgery (beside Seamount) and back again. A trophy for the winner and a sense of pride for all else who actually completed it!
Kinvara Harbour has history – aspects of which can be found among Hansard Papers, Commons Sittings question and answer sessions. This page contains excerpts from the papers:
PIERS AND HARBOURS (IRELAND)— KINVARRA HARBOUR.
HC Deb 24 November 1882 vol 275 cc15-6
MR. T. P. O’CONNOR asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether he has received any Reports from the Inspectors of Fisheries in reference to the condition of Kinvarra Harbour, county Galway; whether the harbour is falling into such a state of decay as to be useless, and also unsafe to life; whether the harbour was originally built at the public expense; and, how has it come to be now private property; whether the Government contemplate any steps for putting the harbour in proper repair, and restoring it to the public; and, if there be any objection to publish the Correspondence and the Reports of the Inspectors of Fisheries on the subject?
MR. TREVELYAN I have received Reports from the Inspectors of Irish Fisheries in reference to the Kinvarra Pier and Harbour, in the County Galway. They show that the harbour is falling into a state of dilapidation. The pier was originally built at the expense of the county-by-county presentment. It is now private property, having been purchased in the Landed Estates Court by Mr. Blake Forster, together with the town of Kinvarra and some adjoining lands. The Government have been advised that as the pier is private property no public money can be expended on it under the Piers and Harbours Acts. Although there is nothing in the Reports of the Inspectors and the other official documents which would render their presentation in any way embarrassing, I must, on principle, decline to lay the Correspondence on the Table.
MR. T. P. O’CONNOR asked, was it not a fact that the harbour came into the possession of its present owner by mistake?
[No reply was given.]
NOTE:>I hope to investigate the background to the abovementioned comment by Mr T.P. O’Connor further and will update accordingly (EO’D).
STEAMER UNABLE TO LAND AT KINVARA HARBOUR
HC Deb 12 August 1901 vol 99 c445
MR. DUFFY I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that an excursion steamer was obliged on Sunday last to lie outside the bar of Kinvara harbour on account of the accumulation of sand and mud; and seeing that small boats are occasionally employed to carry in passengers and goods from vessels, whether he will hold the promised inquiry, and compel the collector of tolls to make the necessary improvements by deepening the entrance of the harbour so as to enable vessels to enter.
MR. WYNDHAM My right hon. friend the President of the Board of Trade has stated that so far as he could ascertain, there was no harbour authority responsible for the maintenance of this harbour. The Commissioners of Public Works have no jurisdiction to hold an inquiry with a view to compel the collector of tolls to improve the harbour.
KINVARA HARBOUR – TOLLS
HC Deb 13 August 1901 vol 99 cc607-8 607
MR. DUFFY (Galway, S.) I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that there is no available authority to compel the receiver of tolls at Kinvara Harbour to take such measures as will facilitate the entrance of vessels; and, seeing that the payment of tolls is levied for that purpose, he will institute inquiry as to the manner in which a remedy can be provided.
MR. WYNDHAM I have nothing to add to my previous reply except that I will give the matter my personal attention during the recess.
DREDGING REQUIRED AT KINVARA HARBOUR
HC Deb 27 February 1903 vol 118 cc1010-1
MR. DUFFY (Galway, S.) To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland if he is aware of the state of Kinvara Harbour owing to the accumulation of silt and want of pier accommodation; and whether the claim of this harbour to receive assistance under the Marine Works (Ireland) Act has been favourably considered; and, if so, when will steps be taken to carry out the improvement.
(Answered by Mr. Wyndham.) The allocation of the funds provided by this Act will be discussed at the conference to be held to-morrow.
DEPUTATION FOR IMPROVEMENTS TO KINVARA HARBOUR
HC Deb 16 February 1904 vol 129 c149
MR. DUFFY I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland if his attention has been directed to the interview which recently took place between the county council of Galway and a number of gentlemen representing the Harbour of Kinvara; and whether, in view of the injury to trading which has taken place in the district owing to the condition of the quay, he will at once take steps to remedy the present state of affairs.
MR. WYNDHAM It was not until the 6th instant that the county council passed a resolution undertaking to make a contribution towards the cost of repairing Kinvara Pier. The matter is now receiving attention.
A FOLLOW UP
HC Deb 07 July 1904 vol 137 c963
MR. JOYCE (Limerick) I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been called to the condition of the pier and harbour of Kinvara, county Galway; and whether, seeing that the county council are prepared to advance a certain amount of money towards the work, he will try to have the promises made by the Lord-Lieutenant and the Congested Districts Board, and also the sum promised under the Marine Works Act, fulfilled, so that this work may be taken in hand as soon as possible.
MR. WYNDHAM I am aware of the condition of the harbour works at Kinvara. There are certain legal matters connected with the proposed expenditure on the works that are engaging the consideration of the Government, and I hope a decision will soon be arrived at.
MR. JOYCE It is badly wanted.
KINVARA HARBOUR – A DANGEROUS PLACE
HC Deb 25 July 1904 vol 138 cc1055-6
MR. JOYCE (Limerick) I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been called to the condition of the pier at Kinvara, county Galway; and whether immediate steps will be taken to remedy this source of danger to the lives of those who have to use this pier.
MR. WYNDHAM Yes, Sir; but the Government accepts no responsibility for the condition of the pier, which is private property. The question of making a contribution towards the cost of putting the pier into a proper state of repair, supplemented by grants from the Department of Agriculture, the Congested Districts Board, and county council, is engaging attention. A decision cannot be reached until certain legal points arising out of the contemplated expenditure have been adequately considered and determined.
MR. JOYCE Has it come to the knowledge of the right hon. Gentleman I that a serious accident occurred at this pier lately?
MR. WYNDHAM Yes, but that does not affect my Answer.
ACCIDENT AT THE HARBOUR
HC Deb 01 August 1904 vol 139 cc273-4
MR. JOYCE (Limerick) On behalf of the hon. Member for South Galway, I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that the old pier at Kinvara Harbour recently gave way, precipitating a horse and cart and several people into the water below; whether he is aware that the harbour is becoming more dangerous; and, if so, whether, in view of the effect of the condition of the entrance to the basin and the present state of the pier upon the trade of the district and the potato and barley market, and in view of the promises given by the Galway County Council, the Congested Districts Board, and the Agricultural Board, to assist in putting the pier and harbour into a fit state for trading, he will take steps to have the necessary improvements carried out.
MR. WYNDHAM I have nothing to add to my reply to the similar Question addressed to me on Monday last by the hon. Member for Limerick.
HC Deb 16 March 1905 vol 143 c209
MR. DUFFY (Galway, S.) I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether the County Council of Galway have as yet approved of the plans of the Board of Works for the improvement of Kinvara Harbour; and, if so, what is the cause of the delay in having the works commenced at once.
MR. ATKINSON The county council have signified their approval of the plans, but before the conveyance of the harbour from the present owner can be accepted it is necessary that the county council should obtain evidence of title, and negotiations to this end are proceeding. It is hoped that the matter may shortly be satisfactorily arranged.
MR. DUFFY In view of the fact that money is available and that great distress exists in the district, will the right hon. Gentleman make strong representations to the Government in favour of the work being put in hand at once?
[The Answer was inaudible.]
HC Deb 05 July 1905 vol 148 cc1137-8
MR. DUFFY I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland if he is aware that the County Council of Galway passed a resolution quite recently urging upon the Government the necessity of carrying out certain improvements in the state of Kinvara Harbour; and, having regard to the many representations made to the Government by the county council, the District Council of Gort, and all the public bodies in the county, in favour of having these improvements carried out, he will state when it is proposed to commence the works.
MR. WALTER LONG An agreement between the county council and the Congested Districts Board as to the future maintenance of these works was only executed a few days ago. The necessary proceedings under the Marine Works Act are now being taken, and in the meantime the Board of Works are taking preliminary measures to arrange for the commencement of the works.
GRANT TOWARDS IMPROVEMENT OF KINVARRA HARBOUR
HC Deb 25 June 1906 vol 159 c608
MR. DUFFY To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been drawn to a Resolution passed by the Galway County Council at its meeting on the 18th instant, wherein disapproval is expressed of the action of the Department of Agriculture in withholding the payment of their promised contribution of £1,100 towards the improvement of Kinvarra Harbour; and whether, in view of the necessity of completing the improvements to the harbour and the extension of the pier, he will take steps to see that the undertaking arrived at, as between the county council and the Deparment of Agriculture, is carried out with the least possible delay.
(Answered by Mr. Bryce.) The Resolution referred to has been received. The proposed harbour works at Kinvarra are in two sections. In one of these, the cost of which is £1,900, the works are already in progress under the Marine Works Act, £1,100 having been provided under that Act, and £800 by the county council. The other scheme, which involves a cost of £1,600, consists of an extension proposed by the county council to which the Department of Agriculture proposes to contribute £1,100. The Department have no desire to withdraw their offered contribution, but a legal difficulty has arisen as to the powers of the county council to contribute their share of the cost. This matter is, at present, receiving the earnest attention of the Government.
Kinvara Harbour – REMINDER
HC Deb 29 November 1906 vol 166 cc316-7
MR. DUFFY (Galway, S.) I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland if he received a Resolution from the County Council of Galway respecting the extension of the works to be carried out in Kinvara Harbour; whether he is aware that an understanding has been arrived at between the county council and the Board of Works, which makes it possible for the works to be commenced at once; whether he will communicate with the Department of Agriculture and the Congested Districts Board with a view of having the grants promised by them placed immediately at the disposal of the county council; and whether, in view of the urgency of the works and the need of finding employment for the poor, he will take immediate steps to give effect to the Resolution of the county council.
MR. BRYCE The Irish Government have received the Resolution in question, and have obtained a report on the subject from the Board of Works. The Resolution appears to be bused on an erroneous assumption that the works to which it refers are to be executed under the Marine Works Act. The works under that Act have been completed at a smaller cost than was originally estimated, and the arrangement between the county council and the Board of Works has reference to the apportionment of the cost of those works. A project for certain other works has been undertaken by the county council with the assistance of contributions from the Department of Agriculture and the Congested Districts Board, and it appears to be the desire of
the county council that the saving on the works already completed under the Marine Works Act should be applied to the new works which are not to be executed under that Act. This, however, cannot legally be done, as I informed the hon. Member on 28th June last † The main difficulty which has arisen in regard to the additional works relates to the fact that under the existing law the county council have no power to provide their share of the funds. As I stated earlier in the session, the Government are prepared to propose legislation which would remove the difficulty, but in the present state of public business I cannot name a date for the introduction of the Bill.
MR. WILLIAM REDMOND Will the right hon. Gentleman introduce a Bill to authorise this work? Nobody in the world would think of opposing it.
MR. BRYCE I am considering the desirability of that, but my experience in the past is not very encouraging.
Improvement of Irish Harbours.
HC Deb 27 May 1907 vol 174 cc1300-1
SIR THOMAS ESMONDS (Wexford, N.) To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland if he will give the names of the harbours on the Irish coast in respect to proposals for the improvement of which the Board of Works have reported to the Irish Government within the past five years.
(Answered by Mr. Birrell.)
County Antrim—Ballycastle Harbour
Ballywillan Pier, Portmuck Pier.
County Clare—Liscannor Harbour.
County Cork—Union Hall Pier.
County Donegal—Ballyness Pier, Buncrana Pier, Bundoran Pier, Cladnageragh Pier, Downies Bay Pier, Falcorrib Slip, Gortnasate Harbour, Malinbeg Boatslip, Newbridge Pier, Portnoo Pier, Rathmullen Pier.
County Down—Portavogie Pier.
County Dublin —Balbriggan Harbour, Rush Pier.
County Galway—Cleggan Pier, Clifden Pier, Kilmurvey Breakwater, Arran Island, Kinvarra Harbour, Mason Island Pier, Roundstone Pier.
County Kerry—Dingle Pier, Renard Point Pier, Rineen Pier.
County Londonderry—Magilligan Point Pier, Portstewart Harbour.
County Louth—Drogheda Harbour.
County Sligo—Sligo Harbour.
County Waterfowl—Ardmore Slip and Breakwater, Ballynagaul Harbour, Passage East Pier.