A decommissioned B767 aircraft has arrived at Enniscrone, Co Sligo, after being moved by barge on the high seas in a mammoth 36-hour exercise from Shannon Airport. The aircraft was transferred to nearby Knockbeg Point, on the periphery of the airport complex, where it was loaded on to a barge at high tide, allowing the estuary and ocean journey to begin.
For the Co Sligo man behind the project, David McGowan, it was a case of many hands working together. “I have learned an awful lot about the power of people working together on this project. The community spirit has been fantastic. From the tremendous help I got from Shannon Airport, to the many, many people who turned out to see us off, makes it all worthwhile.
“We are making good progress, the barge with the aircraft is making her way up the Wild Atlantic Way. We got good news on the weather front, too, with expected swells now not materialising so we are in good shape to be in landing in Enniscrone tomorrow morning.”
Deirdre Whitney, Property Manager at Shannon Airport, said that Shannon has worked with all sorts of cargo over the years but never moved anything as unique as this or in this way. “We have worked on many, many different projects over the years but never anything quite like this. I don’t think we will be seeing its like again too soon, if ever.
“We have kept abreast of progress since the barge and aircraft left here and are delighted that it is sailing smoothly. It is really going to make a huge contribution to tourism in Enniscrone. No doubt we will have many people flying in here in one aircraft and travelling up the west coast to stay in another. It would certainly make for a unique holiday.”
The aircraft will be joined with other modes of transportation – such as buses, taxis and a train – in creating a unique glamping venture for visitors in the popular seaside resort.