Written Answers. - Royal Canal.

Tony Gregory

Ceist:

297 Mr. Gregory asked the Minister for Arts, Culture and the Gaeltacht if a special clean up of the Royal Canal from Newcomen Bridge to Croke Park could be arranged in view of the growing interest in coarse fishing adjacent to Clarke's Bridge, Ballybough, Dublin 3. [16263/96]

My Department is actively involved in promoting leisure activities, including fishing along the canals. In August, local anglers requested my Department to provide fish swims from Newcomen Bridge to Russell Street Bridge, as they planned to hold a fishing competition on 17 August.

My Department is pleased to facilitate events such as this, which were also recommended by the Royal Canal Corridor Study. Accordingly, arrangements were made for sections of the reed fringe along the canal bank to be cut back to provide fishermen with the opportunity to attract fish close to the canal bank. Indeed, it is planned to have further discussions with local angling interests with a view to fostering and promoting fishing in this area.

Earlier in the year, a contract was placed for the maintenance of the banks along the Royal Canal in the Dublin area. This involves grass cutting, litter collection, and rubbish removal. This is an on-going programme and one which is designed to ensure that the canal banks are cleaned on a regular basis.
In addition, a weed cutting machine was brought into the area in July to assist in the removal of weeds which grow at a prolific rate in the summer months. At present it is not proposed to carry out any further cleaning works in this area using the weed cutting machine. However, maintainance of the canal banks will continue as usual under the existing maintenance contract.