The Life Of The Falkirk Wheel

The Life Of The Falkirk Wheel


1933 – The Forth & Clyde and Union Cannels were dismantled. The original cannels were linked by 11 locks which took a whole day to transit.

1994 – The concept of a wheel as a boatlift was considered.

The final design was said to be inspired by many things; a Celtic double headed spear, vast turning propeller of a Clydbank built ship, a whales ribcage and the spine of a fish.  

1998 – Work started on the £84.5million Millennium Link to rejoin the 2 cannels.

2002 – Her Majesty The Queen opened the 1st only rotating boat lift.


Interesting Facts

  • 1200 Tonnes of Steel was used.
  • 1000 construction staff were involved.
  • The Structure has over 15,000 bolts matched with 45,000 holes all of which were hand tightened.
  • It is 35 meters tall – the same as 8 Double Decker buses on top of each other.
  • It uses just 1.5Kwh of energy to turn – the equivalent of boiling 8 household kettles.

To read more or to see how the Falkirk Wheel works please visit: