Grainne Uaile Sub Aqua Club to welcome visiting divers to North Mayo for Ballina 2023 International Dive Rally
Event at Kilcummin Harbour from August 11-13 will showcase one of Europe’s top scuba diving destinations
Building on the success of their previous annual dive gatherings including 2022’s Western Dive Rally, Ballina’s Grainne Uaile Sub Aqua Club expects to welcome over 150 divers from clubs all around Ireland and further afield to its International Dive Rally at Kilcummin Harbour from August 11 to 13 as part of the Ballina 2023 programme of events. The rally will showcase the region’s incredible diving offering and will also incorporate a programme of entertainment for members of the public to come along and enjoy at the site of General Humbert’s historic landing, 225 years ago in 1798.
Five dives in total have been scheduled over the course of the weekend, in stunning dive locations including Ballycastle Bay, Killala Bay and majestic Downpatrick Head. Divers, locals and visitors are also invited to come along and enjoy music in the marquee, tasty barbecues and boat tours from Kilcummin as part of the weekend’s festivities. DJ Chris Lawlor will play on Friday night, August 11 and lively rock, soul and reggae band Stewy and the Vegans will entertain partygoers on Saturday night, August 12.
North Mayo boasts some spectacular dive sites due to its geographic positioning as Ireland’s closest land base to the Continental Shelf, which is the driving force of marine biodiversity to the coastline, making it one of Europe’s top scuba diving destinations.
Speaking about the Dive Rally, Chairperson of Grainne Uaile Sub Aqua Club, Jean-Francois Brisson said: “We are fortunate to have such amazing dive sites on our doorstep in North Mayo that attract many from around Ireland combined with the spectacular scenery of the Céide Fields and Downpatrick Head as viewed from our diving ribs. We look forward to sharing these sites with our visitors during this year’s Dive Rally.”
Over the weekend, Grainne Uaile Sub Aqua Club boats will transport divers to their sites, while clubs also have the option to bring along their own boats. A campsite will operate close to the harbour, and a bottle refill facility will be provided. A shore dive will also take place on Friday, August 11.
Grainne Uaile Sub Aqua Club is the second largest active diving club in Ireland. Established in 1979 to promote sports diving, it now boasts over 60 members, and has trained hundreds of people to enjoy diving along the Mayo coat in a safe, enjoyable environment. The club also operates a Search and Recovery Unit on a voluntary, on-call capacity, working closely with An Garda Síochána, the Coast Guard and other agencies. For more information on the club, on the International Dive Rally and a full schedule and site map, visit www.grainneuailesac.ie
The Ballina 2023 celebrations continue apace, and Humbert’s landing at Kilcummin, and the 200th anniversary of his death are both being marked this year as part of the Ballina 2023 Year of the French/Bliain na bhFrancach celebrations, in partnership with Mayo County Council and the French Embassy.