Scottish Canals latest offering at The Falkirk Wheel was officially launched by Transport Minister, Jenny Gilruth MSP alongside Scottish Canals CEO, Catherine Topley as part of Climate Week.

Visitors to the world’s only rotating boat lift, can now experience a little more canal side scenery in an environmentally conscious way by hiring one of Scottish Canals new e-boats.

Curious captains can now hire a boat and cruise along the Forth & Clyde Canal between The Falkirk Wheel and Bonnybridge enjoying the views from the waterway.

The venture, at one of the nation’s top tourist spots, The Falkirk Wheel, has been met with a flow of interest as a growing number of tourists and day-trippers seek to enjoy new experiences in a sustainable way.

Launched by Transport Minister, Jenny Gilruth MSP alongside Scottish Canals CEO, Catherine Topley as part of Climate Week, the Polycraft Tuffy 300 electric boat has made waves in the eco-friendly tourism market.

Transport Minister, Jenny Gilruth MSP, said As part of Scotland’s Climate Week, I’m pleased to join Scottish Canals in welcoming their new e-boats for hire at the Falkirk Wheel.

“This new venture responds to the growing appetite for more sustainable tourism experiences and adds to the many eco-friendly ways that people can already enjoy Scotland’s Canals.”

Scottish Canals plan to expand their eco-friendly offer next year by having a host of new boats available which can accommodate up to six or eight sailors per vessel. These new boats will be complimented by the opportunity to take a trip on the world’s only rotating boatlift, The Falkirk Wheel, which uses the power of just eight kettles to turn the 500-tonne steel structure.

Catherine Topley, CEO of Scottish Canals, said “Our canal network has always been at the forefront of low carbon travel and this latest offering at The Falkirk Wheel allows tourists and local visitors to cruise the canal in an eco-friendly way.

“The Falkirk Wheel is 20 years old this year and remains the world’s only rotating boat-lift, attracting 500,000 visitors each year, it is our vision that The Wheel becomes a global beacon for sustainable tourism, we know that won’t happen overnight, but our new e-boats takes us a step closer to realising that vision”.

After announcing its journey to Net Zero in June 2020, the public body wasted no time in delivering on that promise with new air source heat pumps and £250,000 of solar panel fitted on the site.

The Falkirk Wheel e-boats are available to rent for just £35 for 90 minutes and can accommodate up to three people. Scottish Canals re-invest all proceeds made from The Falkirk Wheel into caring for Scotland’s 250-year-old canal network.


Notes to editors

For further information, please contact:

Scott Lamond at Scottish Canals on:

07976 524446 or email

Matt Morwood at Scottish Canals on:

07768835482 or email

About Scottish Canals

  • Scottish Canals is responsible to the Scottish Government for the management and development of five Scottish canals as well as the surrounding estate and The Falkirk Wheel. See or follow @ScottishCanals for more information
  • The Forth & Clyde, Union and Monkland canals in the Lowlands, the Crinan Canal in Argyll and the Caledonian Canal in the Highlands, together extend over 137 miles from coast to coast, across country and into the cities of Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness
  • Built two hundred years ago to fire the Industrial Revolution, today the canals contribute to the Scottish Government agenda of developing a Greener; Healthier; Smarter; Safer and Stronger; and Wealthier and Fairer Scotland by acting as a catalyst for sustainable economic development, regeneration and tourism; contributing to education, biodiversity, heritage and promoting active living and healthier lifestyles
  • Today Scottish Canals is utilising these 18th century assets along with innovative technology to tackle modern problems. Through working with partners to create pioneering systems, Scottish Canals is helping to combat flooding and driving positive transformation in some of Scotland’s most disadvantaged areas
  • The Forth & Clyde, Union, Monkland, Caledonian and Crinan canals are recognised as Scheduled Monuments and attract 22million visits per year. See for more information