Noel recalls the revival of the Royal Canal during World War 2 or 'The Emergency' when horse draw barges were used to transport goods from the country into and out of Dublin. The old canal boats had big long ropes going from the boats to the horses. He talks about how the ropes from all the horse pulling wore into the stonework as the rope caught the edge going under the bridges over 200 years. He also speaks about learning to swim in the Royal Canal.
You can hear this story first hand by listening to the clipping below.
Recording- Noel Spain (Early Memories of the Royal Canal)