Rivers and Waterways Week

Falkirk Wheel

Part of

We have learned how locks work but sometimes, if a boat came to a very large hill, they would have to go through a series of locks. The Forth & Clyde and Union Canals used to be linked by 11 locks which took nearly a day to travel through. In the 1930s, these locks were taken apart, but in 2002, something new replaced them!

The Falkirk Wheel is a kind of boat lift that boats can sail into and then ride down like a Ferris Wheel to the canal below.

Watch the videos below to learn how it works.

Archimedes and a Boat Lift: the Falkirk Wheel

Water Displacement Activity – Try out this activity to see why the level of the water remains the same in the gondolas on the Falkirk Wheel no matter how big or heavy the boat is inside!

Falkirk Wheel
Falkirk Wheel
Water Displacement Activity
Water Displacement Activity (PDF)

If you have enjoyed these activities please share them with your friends and family.