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Where are the Barges

Midsummer’s Day 1961 saw the last commercial passage of a Guinness barge on the River Liffey. According to Al Byrne in his most entertaining book “Guinness Times – My Days in the World’s Most Famous Brewery” it was 6 p.m. when the 80-foot long by 17-foot-one inch-wide barge, Castleknock, sailed from the Custom House with a load of empties and slowly made its funereal way up river to the jetty at St. James’s Gate.

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The Guinness Fleets

The Guinness brewing concern had substantial maritime resources to support distribution of the famous beer. In addition the family spent a lot of their leisure on a range of fabulous pleasure craft. Initially the reach of the brewing concern expanded from 1790 thanks to the commencement of the Irish canal system. Barge transport enabled distribution of their beer from Dublin and import of malt from all parts of the country.

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The original Lugnad was, according to legend, a "luamaire": that is a navigator or helmsman. He is credited with bringing his uncle, Saint Patrick, to Ireland. Lugnad's grave is in a ruined monastery on Inchagoill island in Lough Corrib, County Galway