As part of our winter works programme, Scottish Canals’ engineering team temporarily reduced the water level of a stretch of the Union Canal at Linlithgow between the 9th of January and 16th February 2017. This allowed us to undertake a more detailed study of the condition of the canal embankments and channel in order to inform our future works and maintenance of the waterway.
As part of the project, we held two drop-in sessions to allow the public to come along, see the canal as they had (probably) never seen it before, chat with our team, and find out a little more about the engineering, heritage, and wildlife of the Union Canal and the works we undertake to safeguard its rich heritage. A huge thank you to everyone (all 700 of you!) who came along to the two sessions.
The canal is now fully rewatered. Thank you to everyone – especially our boaters – for their understanding and interest in the project. We’ll update this page with the outcomes of the study as they become available.
What about the fish?
The fish will be caught and temporarily rehomed in other sections of the canal by specialist contractors. We’re expecting to relocate several thousand fish, including roach, tench, perch, pike, three-spined stickleback, eel, and brown trout. After the canal is re-watered, they’ll make their way back to their original ‘homes.’ We’re working closely with various experts and public bodies such as Scottish Environment Protection Agency; River Forth Fisheries Trust; Marine Scotland; Scottish Natural Heritage; and the Scottish Federation for Coarse Angling throughout the project.
How do we drain the canal?
We’ll drain the canal by opening a valve in the bed of the canal at Woodcockdale. This will remove around 30,000 cubic metres of water during the project. We’ll be carefully monitoring and managing the flow of water through the valve and catching any sediment that may wash out of the canal using straw bales placed in the burn the water will run into.
To keep you informed, we’ll update this page throughout the works and post regular updates on Scottish Canals’ Facebook page and Twitter.