Event Application Guidelines

Waterways Ireland encourages anyone wishing to hold an event on Waterways Ireland property to apply for approval a minimum of 12 weeks in advance.  This helps us ensure your event is safely planned, that it does not clash with planned maintenance or development work, or other events and has approval to proceed in time to advertise and promote your event successfully.

Waterways Ireland does not normally charge a fee for events on its property, however if you have requested our assistance and we are able to help, you may incur a charge to cover the costs of that assistance.  Waterways Ireland may also charge a fee for commercial use of its property.​

APPLICATION PROCESS is made up of a number of steps: (details below)

  1. ​Talk to us
  2. Application Form to Hold an Event on Waterways Ireland​ Property​
  3. Insurance and Indemnity
  4. Risk Assessment Guidelines
  5. Submit the Application
  6. Assessment
  7. Submitting a Complaint or Compliment​​

Step 1 Talk to us about your event 

If you are organising an event on a waterway managed by Waterways Ireland for the first time, or your event is new or unusual,  call us to discuss it before completing the form. 

​WaterwayLocal Contact Person​​​Postal Address
​Shannon Navigation,
Shannon-Erne Waterway
​Paddy Harkin, Inspector of Navigation
Tel:  +353 (0) 906 494 232
​Waterways Ireland,
The Docks,
Co Westmeath
​Royal Canal,
Grand Canal,
Barrow Navigation
​Shane Anderson, Assistant Inspector of Navigation
Tel: +353 (0) 57 9352 300
​Waterways Ireland,
 Harbour Street,
Co Offaly
​Erne System​David Wilson, Lough Erne Manager/Warden
Tel: +44 (0) 28 6632 2836
​Lough Erne Wardens Office,
Castle Lane,
BT74 5GH​
​Lower Bann Navigation​Stephen Douglas, Senior Engineer
Tel: +44 (0) 28 7034 4342
​Waterways Ireland,
40 Castleroe Road,
BT51 3RL

Step 2 Application Form

Complete the Application to hold an Event on Waterways Ireland Property form.

The form is designed for all kinds of events, if a question is not applicable to the event you are planning, please mark this as 'not applicable' or N/A.

It is important that you complete the whole form and ensure that all of the activities you are planning are included on the form as adding additional activities will require you to seek Waterways Ireland approval again.

Step 3 Insurance and Indemnity

Event organisers are required to hold valid insurance policies for the event, for example public liability, employer liability, product liability (where appropriate).  A minimum value of £5 million in Northern Ireland and €6.5 million in Ireland for public liability is required.

It is the event organiser's responsibility to ensure that their insurer is shown the application form and is familiar with the planned event and activities for which permission is sought, so that the appropriate insurance is in place.

If the event is planned within 12 weeks of the date of your application, a letter must be provided along with the completed application form from your insurer confirming that the appropriate insurance cover is in place for the proposed event and confirm they have seen the application form.

Event organisers are required to fully and effectively indemnify Waterways Ireland against all liability whatsoever for damage to property owned by Waterways Ireland or third parties; any liability that may arise to the public or employees of Waterways Ireland in respect of personal injury death damage or loss of property however caused as a result of the event. 

Step 4 Risk Assessment

Event organisers are required to provide a risk assessment.  For larger events (500+ persons attending) and those considered high risk (such as predominance of motor-powered vessels or has a multiple number of waterside or waterway activities within the event) a more detailed safety plan with emergency procedures will be required.

Event organisers have a legal responsibility to ensure the health, safety and welfare of those involved in the event and those attending.

If the event is planned within 12 weeks of the date of your application, the risk assessment and/or safety plan must accompany the completed application form. 

Event organisers are strongly recommended to consult the Code of Practice for the Safe Operation of Recreational Craft and current Marine Notices. ​

Step 5 Submit the Application

Submit the application online​ or by email to a minimum of 12 weeks in advance of the date of your event. If you do not have email access please send all the documentation to Waterways Ireland Inspectorate, The Docks, Athlone, Co Westmeath. This may lengthen the time taken to process your application. Incomplete applications cannot be processed.​

Step 6 Assessment Process​

Waterways Ireland will acknowledge receipt of your application and aim to assess applications within a month of the closing date. When Waterways Ireland is satisfied with the information provided we may issue an agreement listing any terms and conditions for the use of our property for your event.  This agreement must be signed by the event organiser and returned prior to your event being permitted to proceed.​​​​​​​​​

Step 7 Submitting a​ Complaint or Compliment

In the first instance a written complaint or compliment should be sent to the Inspector of Navigation, The Docks, Athlone, Co Westmeath. 
More information on how to submit a complaint or compliment.
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