Limerick Underground

The view from the gutter



Limerick City Baths return for one night only as part of Samhain festival

For one night only SwimableLimerick brings back public baths to the city. As night falls we will open our own bathing area on the shores of The Shannon. Plunge into the cool waters of our city’s river and experience a moonlit swim. The bathing area will be illuminated with lanterns, glowsticks and the lights from medieval Limerick. Afterwards, SwimableLimerick’s legendary post swim feast awaits. Hot drinks and treats from The Urban Food Co-op will be served by the hearth of the Curraghgour Boat Club.

The bathing area opens at 6.30pm on Friday 26th October at The Curraghgour Boat Club. We are delighted to be running this as part of Samhain: Limerick’s Halloween festival.

Spaces must be prebooked and are limited. Spaces are now sold out but if you would like to be added to the reserve list please email us at

For any queries please contact Elisa on 087-9120231 or email us at

Help us reinstate Limerick city bathing!

Limerick Council have requested that the public assist them with identifying official bathing areas in Limerick city and county. There are currently no designated bathing areas in Limerick city. A designated bathing area would legally mandate Limerick Council to comply with the following:

  • The water is monitored to ensure it meets stringent microbiological water quality standards. (Currently Limerick Council does not monitor the water quality in the city Shannon as it is not a designated bathing area)
  • Safety measures (including possibility of lifeguards during Summer Season)
  • Detailed description of the identified bathing area
  • Bathing Area profile including an assessment on the risk of pollution and what action would be taken if pollution occurs

This is the first step to the return of baths in our city! Please respond to the Limerick Council with the following information:

  1. Comment on a bathing area that you currently swim in
  2. How many people use this bathing area
  3. What facilities exist at this site and how accessibility it is
  4. Any safety issues

Email this information to the Water Safety Development Officer, Limerick City & County Council, Dooradoyle, Limerick or by email to the deadline is Friday 22nd June

Continue reading “Help us reinstate Limerick city bathing!”

SwimableLimerick @ Riverfest- Event Information-Update for Reserve List



As part of Limerick’s Riverfest Festival Weekend, SwimableLimerick have organised two social swims in the River Shannon.

SwimableLimerick @Riverfest is an opportunity for people to dip their toe (and a whole lot more!) into Limerick’s beautiful River Shannon. Our swims take place from the historic Curraghour Boat Club and we provide a fun, relaxed environment for anyone to enjoy the freedom of swimming in the open water. You will be swimming in the heart of medieval Limerick and will experience some stunning vistas of the city from the River Shannon.

Our swims are all about having fun and enjoying the open water, not about fast times or swimming long distances so feel free to just have a bit of a splash or wade your feet into the water. For those whom would like to swim a longer distance, the swimming area will be confined to a 750 metre area and is an opportunity to see sights such as Thomond Bridge,The Treaty Stone and King Johns Castle from a truly, unique perspective. Swimmers can swim as short or far a distance in the designated area as they choose. All swimmers will receive a custom made SwimableLimerick Swimming Cap that they must wear in the water. 


The best of Open Water swimming is the food afterwards. Join us by The Curraghour Boat Club fire for our post swim picnicswith good food and company! SwimableLimerick have teamed up with Canteen and The Urban Co-Op for our post swim picnics. In the Boat Club we will be serving hot pittas with homemade choco-nut spread, blueberry drizzle muffins, Rigneys farm granola, The messy Apron Cookies, Ceile Kombucha…and more

This event is opened only to those aged 18 or over but children and supporters are more than welcome to watch from the shore and  join us for a cuppa or juice in the boat club following the swim.  All tickets are free but MUST be pre-booked at the links below. We have to limit each swim to 45 swimmers so tickets are available on a 1st come, 1st served basis. 

The first social swim will take place on Saturday 5th May at 9am, with swimmers in the water for 10am. Tickets for Saturday can be booked here–  SOLD OUT

The second social swim will take place on Monday 7th May at 10.30am, with swimmers in the water at 11.30am. Tickets for Monday can be booked here   SOLD OUT

*All Tickets for both swims are now SOLD OUT. If you would like to be put on the reserve list please email us with your name and contact details at*


For any further information please contact Elisa O’Donovan on 087-9120231 or contact us at

We would like to thank Limerick Council for their support with this event. More information on Riverfest can be found here

Restoring The River Shannon-A Limerick event on World Fish Migration Day

Join SwimableLimerick, Old River Shannon Trust and the Limerick Greens at 11am on Saturday 21st April at Ormston House for ‘Restoring the River Shannon’, a Limerick event to mark World Fish Migration Day 2018. We will be joined by speakers on how we can take positive action on the many issues affecting the Lower River Shannon. This event aims to bring together all interested parties who wish to ensure a sustainable, quality and usable River Shannon for all river users in years to come.

Speakers and topics on the morning include:
How to restore the River Shannon (Will O’Connor, Ecofact)
Dublin Water Supply Project and its threats to the Shannon (Gerry Siney, Shannon Protection Alliance)
Reviving salmon angling in the Shannon catchment (Eoin Brocket)

And more……

Directions to Ormston House, Patrick Street, Limerick can be found here.

This event is free and open to all.

For further information please email, follow us on twitter, facebook or drop us a line on 087-9120231

Why we swim from The Curraghgour Boat Club


I’m walking along Rutland Street. It’s a cold evening in the city so I brace myself from the harsh winds and stay bundled as close to the passing buildings as I can. My walk takes me past the fading remnants of Limerick’s failed Limerick 2020 bid proclaiming that ‘Culture is where we are from’.  It reminds me of where I am headed and I quicken my pace.

Today is International Women’s Day in the city. There are public meetings being held, evening dinners enjoyed, readings and songs being sung throughout Limerick to celebrate our cities women . My International Women’s Day is ending with a walk along a moonlit Merchants Quay as I approach the Curraghgour Boat Club. Inside awaits a room full of boatmen, with me a lone female, ready to address them all.

12 months ago this space would have held no meaning or interest to me. Indeed, like many Limerick people I have walked by this small, white bungalow perched on the edge of The Shannon numerous times with a mere curiosity. This intrigue increased when a ‘No Bridge Here’ banner was unfurled  along their shoreline proclaiming their existence to our city. Yet a year goes by and here I am, standing in the club house shadow about to address its committee. I reminisce of when I first walked into the club on a basking hot, sunny day in June last year with nothing but an idea of swimming in The Shannon. Me and my swimming togs easily could have been turned away, politely declined for spontaneously evading their Summer’s afternoon. Instead I was met with a cup of tea and a two hour tour of every nook and cranny of what I now believe to be as Limerick’s best kept secret.  Continue reading “Why we swim from The Curraghgour Boat Club”

Videos and Update:Limerick City River Information Evening

Over 120 Limerick citizens attended our Limerick City River Evening in Ormston House earlier this month. As Living Limerick summed up topics discussed on the night included Shannon water quality, flooding, barriers to fish migration, endangered habitats and species, navigation by boat, pollution, river clean ups, recreation and swimability!

We were fortunate the brilliant Wendigo Media were on hand to film all the presentations from the night as follows:

Elisa O’Donovan from SwimableLimerick introduced the night, followed by Pat Lysaght, Limerick’s very own Eye of the River. Pat spoke about the various locks and bridges throughout the city, as well as the current and flow that impacts getting out and about on the boat.


Continue reading “Videos and Update:Limerick City River Information Evening”

Limerick City River Information Evening

Join us at 7.30pm on Tuesday 6th February at Ormston House for a relaxed and informative evening as we learn more about The Shannon that flows through the heart of Limerick city. The aim of the evening is to support the Limerick community in understanding more about our city river and to plan for Shannon activities in 2018. Speakers and topics on the night include:

City tides, ardnacrusha currents and their impact on the river (Pat Lysaght, Eye of the River)

Ecology, flora and fauna of the lower river Shannon (Will O’Connor, Ecofact)

How to care for our city river (Limerick Riverpath Volunteers)

Local Authority Waters and Communities Office: Their role and an update on local river plans (Ruairí Ó Conchúir, Community Water Officer)

Planning for city river activities in 2018 (SwimableLimerick)

Directions to Ormston House, Patrick Street, Limerick can be found here.

This event is free and open to all.

For further information please email, follow us on twitter, facebook or drop us a line on 087-9120231

King Johns castle

August City Swims- update

We are organising weekly city swims throughout August for Limerick people to dip their toe (and a whole lot more!) into our beautiful River Shannon.

Our aim is to provide a safe and fun environment for anyone to enjoy the freedom of curraghowerswimming in the city. The lovely folks at the Curraghgour Boat Club are kindly letting us use their facilities as we will start the swim from their slipway.  Our aim will be to swim from the Boat Club to Thomond Bridge at a nice, relaxed pace. As our River Shannon is tidal, dates and times have been arranged to make it the most pleasant for swimming. Please try and arrive at least 5 minutes before these times:

Saturday 12th Augsut 9.30am

Sunday 20th August 5.45pm (Weather conditions as of 12pm today indicate localised flooding. This is not safe for swimming so there will be no swim in The Shannon today) 

Monday 21st August 6.30pm

Saturday 26th August 9.30am

What you need to bring with you:

  • A brightly coloured swimming cap so you are visible in the water
  • Swimming suit/ togs or wetsuit and googles
  • Towel
  • You! With a sense of fun, curiosity and willingness to try new experiences

Continue reading “August City Swims- update”

Limerick Underground goes Open Water

“We all swim at the same pace and stick together. And watch out for the swans!”

It’s 12.30pm on a warm but overcast Saturday afternoon in Limerick city. I am teetering on the edge of St Michael’s Rowing Club’s new pontoon. I look down at my bare legs as I shuffle my toes towards the water. Beside me stand Ger and John, me in my bright pink swimming suit and the two men in their speedos. The three of us make an unlikely trio, formed through an impromptu message I sent through the Limerick Masters whatsapp group earlier that day. I look across the river, towards House, where my friends are lounging in the garden treating themselves to afternoon tea and cake. I question why I am not over there with them. I have had a particularly stressful week. Work has been hectic; I’m pretty sure I’m being ghosted by my sole Tinder match and with one week before pay day I am looking into days of Dealz tinned soup for nourishment.

“One, Two, three. Jump!” shouts Ger. We all lift into the air together and then there are no more times for questions or worries. Continue reading “Limerick Underground goes Open Water”

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