Dictionary of Irish Architects 1720 - 1940

English-born canal engineer, from Flixton, Lancashire, who was brought to Ireland by the Marquess of Donegall in 1799 (or soon afterwards) to complete the final stretch of the Lagan Navigation from Sprucefield to Lough Neagh. Owen completed his task in 1793.(1) He settled at Moira, Co. Down, and died on 13 January 1830. He was buried in nearby Soldierstown churchyard.(2) He may be the Mr Owen who worked on canals at Lissanoure, Co. Antrim (1787),(3) and at Baronscourt, Co. Tyrone.(4)


All information in this entry not otherwise accounted for is from Ruth Delany, Ireland's Inland Waterways(1988), 25-6.

(1) A section of the Lagan navigation, dated 1813, is in NA, OPW5HC/6/0626.
(2) The inscription on his gravestone reads: 'Here lieth the body/of/Richard Owen/of/Flixton in Lancashire/who departed this life/January 13th 1830/Engineer of The Lagan Navigation' (May Blair, Once upon the Lagan: the story of the Lagan Canal(1981), 39).
(3) PRONI D572/9/16 (IAA, Edward McParland files, Acc. 2008/44).
(4) PRONI, T2541/1A1/14-17 (IAA, Edward McParland files, Acc. 2008/44).