BALTIMORE MARITIME CENTRE
WINTER LECTURE SERIES
The Sailing Trawlers of Ringsend
Cormac F Lowth
Thursday 2 October 2014 at 20:00 in Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club, Ringsend
Entry €5 in aid of RNLI
From 1819 to the immediate aftermath of the First World War, a large fleet of sailing beam-trawlers, known as smacks, existed in Ringsend and Dublin Bay. Many of these fishing vessels and their crews originated in Brixham in Devon and their fishing activities remained in a virtually unchanged state for about a century.
Throughout that time, an interchange of boats and people took place between Devon and Ringsend and many of the descendants of the fishermen still live in the neighbourhood. Ringsend became a centre for the building of sailing trawlers. Much of these fishing activities and the associated way of life of the fishing community that included boat-building, and the making of nets, ropes, and sails, have gone largely unrecorded until this lecture.
Cormac F. Lowth, maritime historian and distinguished member of the Maritime Institute of Ireland, has had an abiding interest in the Ringsend sailing smacks, having in the 1950s,met and spoken to many old fishermen in Ringsend who had trawled under sail. He has drawn together much information about the period and many hitherto unpublished photographs and illustrations of the smacks, which will be included in his illustrated lecture.