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River the Focus as ‘Pride and Joy’ sails in Limerick

Robert Murphy, John Paul Sheehan, Triona O Connor, Joe O Neill and Tommy Meehan at the Maiden Voyage of

Robert Murphy, John Paul Sheehan, Triona O Connor, Joe O Neill and Tommy Meehan at the Maiden Voyage of "Pride and Joy" [Picture: Brian Arthur/ Press 22]

 

THE hard work of a group of Limerick boatbuilders has paid off as their ‘Pride and Joy’ set sail on the Shannon.

The 16-foot traditional rowing boat has been built by participants of homeless charity Focus Ireland’s Preparation for Education Training and Employment Course.

The charity teamed up with the Ilen boat building project in the LEDP to complete the boat, which has been christened Pride and Joy.

And it set sail on its maiden voyage last Thursday from St Michael’s Rowing Club.

The boat - built with Indonesian plywood - has been constructed in twice-weekly classes over the past four years.

Project worker with Focus Ireland Triona O’Connor said: “I am really proud to see this. They have worked so hard to get to where they are today.

It is hoped the group will take part in water safety lessons over the summer months using the craft.

The man who had the idea to build the boat, Joseph O’Neill at Edward Street, said building it is a “very intricate” process.

“Every minute little detail takes so much work, you wouldn’t believe it. It is just unreal,” he said.

But he is delighted with the finished product, and says he hopes to build another one in future.

“I might take a month off first though,” he laughed.

 

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