What is a Diving Bell?
Diving Bells are structures which allow people to work underwater. This diving bell is simply a metal block with a hollow section in the bottom for workers to operate in.
Dublin Port’s Diving Bell
Dublin Ports diving bell is an enduring symbol of Dublin's maritime heritage. The Diving Bell was designed by the port engineer Bindon Blood Stoney. This was used for the building of the Port’s quay walls in the 1800's. Dublin Port had a big problem with silting and sandbanks especially around the mouth of the River Liffey. The purpose of these walls were to create a deep channel where boats can safely navigate into the port.
The Diving Bell allows workers level the area underwater where the large blocks were to be placed. The bell would be lowered into the water while attached to the barge. With the bell sitting on the seabed, water would be pumped out of the hollow section to allow workers enter. Workers would then excavate the site where the massive concrete blocks would be placed.
The Bell has since been restored by Dublin Port Company and you can now walk inside it. There is also interesting information about the history of the Diving Bell inside.