Two enquiries held at the time give an insight into the canal. The Crighton Committee of Enquiry was set up in 1878 to investigate the performance of the Board of Works, and following their findings, the Monck commission looked at the issues of a route from Belfast to Limerick. As part of the evidence collected, Pratt related that he had ceased to maintain it after 1865, since there was no traffic, and John Grey Vesey Porter, one of the trustees, described a three-week journey along the canal in a steamer in 1868, which had only been achieved by Pratt moving the water from pound to pound to keep the boat afloat. He declared the whole project to be one of the most shameful pieces of mismanagement in any county. In 1887, the Cavan and Leitrim Railway arrived in the area, and were sufficiently confident that the canal would not be used that they built low bridges over it, preventing navigation. The railway was not a commercial success either, and was another drain on local resources.
The Shuttleworth Commission recommended that the upper lock gates should be repaired in 1906, to prevent further damage to the structures of the waterway, but with no funds available, the navigation trustees concentrated on minor bridge repairs, to keep landowners and local authorities happy, and by 1948 they had ceased to function. Local authorities had to assume responsibility for bridge repairs, and there were ongoing problems with flooding.
Read more about this topic: Shannon–Erne Waterway
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Famous quotes containing the word decline:
“I heard a Californian student in Heidelberg say, in one of his calmest moods, that he would rather decline two drinks than one German adjective.”
—Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (18351910)
“I rather think the cinema will die. Look at the energy being exerted to revive ityesterday it was color, today three dimensions. I dont give it forty years more. Witness the decline of conversation. Only the Irish have remained incomparable conversationalists, maybe because technical progress has passed them by.”
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“We have our little theory on all human and divine things. Poetry, the workings of genius itself, which, in all times, with one or another meaning, has been called Inspiration, and held to be mysterious and inscrutable, is no longer without its scientific exposition. The building of the lofty rhyme is like any other masonry or bricklaying: we have theories of its rise, height, decline and fallwhich latter, it would seem, is now near, among all people.”
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