Grand Gesture for Friends

Pictured Above: Críona Ni Dhálaigh unveils the new bench on the Grand Canal.

Pictured Above: Críona Ni Dhálaigh unveils the new bench on the Grand Canal.

On Thursday 17th September, at Mespil Road Bridge, Grand Canal, An tArdmhéara, Críona Ní Dhálaigh, unveiled two benches dedicated to the Friends of the Grand Canal.

For the past eight years  groups of volunteers have been turning up in all weathers to keep the canal banks tidy and to create a pleasent waterside environment for all to enjoy.

As a result, longer and longer stretches of the canal have been transformed from underutilised wastelands into a fantastic amenity to be enjoyed by all.

An tArdmhéara acknowledged the Trojan work carried out by the volunteers saying: “I would encourage everyone to share this civic responsibility, individuals and businesses alike, and to take the opportunity to work together to ensure that the Grand Canal remains a valued amenity.”

At the unveiling An tArdmhéara launched a new initiative designed to encourage local businesses to get involved and to “integrate social and environmental concerns into their mainstream business operations on a voluntary basis.”  The scheme will be known as the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Programme and its aim will be to promote the use of the Grand Canal to its fullest potential. Involvement can take the form of a number of sponsorship opportunities, or businesses can organise work parties to participate in voluntary canal clean up days.

If you are a business owner or manager who is looking for a team-building idea with a difference this could be the perfect plan. Give your staff a regular, fun, day out and improve the environment at the same time.

You can find out more about volunteering or sponsorship opportunities at a website dedicated to all things Grand Canal.

Alternatively go to the Inland Waterways Association of Ireland (IWAI) website. They can be found at

By Jennifer Reddin