I logged onto Facebook this morning to read the following status from Sup For All:
SUPforall regretfully wishes to inform the national and international paddling community and to whom it concerns that we have ceased all SUP and Lake-shore activities at Trawane Bay pending a Sligo Circuit Court Decision due on June 7th 2016.
This legal action, initiated by Sligo County Council, against David O’Hara|SUPforall demands for a cessation of all Stand Up Paddle activity from this location.
SUPforall will clarify our position following the Courts Ruling.
I know there are two sides to every story but I honestly can’t see the logic behind this decision.
This is my point of view:
I’ve known David O’Hara for many years now, he’s the kind of person you can go to if you need anything. He’s one of the best ambassadors that Sligo has and does monumental work promoting the county and all it has to offer. Supforall is based on Trawane Bay, just across from the Lake Isle of Innisfree on the shores of Lough Gill. It was the perfect place to bring tourists and locals and let them experience the peace and tranquillity of walking on water and seeing Sligo from a different point of view.
People have paddled in sunshine and rain. Whatever the weather David would be there with a smile on his face, doing what he loves best and sharing his passion of Stand Up Paddling with anyone who wanted to join him.
There were dawn chorus paddles, paddles over to Innisfree with musicians playing on the island or perhaps David reciting the famous poem. There were even paddles under the light of a full moon with the mist rising and just the sound of water lapping the lake shores.
This was a sport that all abilities and all ages could take part in and it wasn’t just about the paddling. It was the sense of peace, just a short drive out of Sligo town and you could relax completely. I’ve spent many happy hours sitting beside the camp fire with tea from a tin mug discussing thoughts with like-minded people.
If David isn’t allowed to continue what next for Sligo? Will people be told they are no longer allowed to visit the Lake Isle of Innisfree? Will tourists be turned away? We need to encourage David and others like him to continue doing the good work they are doing.
I’d like to wish David and his family all the very best and I do hope things work out for the best.