Demand for better light at the end of Falkirk tunnel

There have been complaints the Falkirk Tunnel is too dark to negotiate safely
There have been complaints the Falkirk Tunnel is too dark to negotiate safely
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Canal bosses have promised action after complaints about the condition of the lighting in Falkirk’s oldest tunnel.

The 192-year-old Falkirk Tunnel under Prospect Hill near Glen Village is a key part of the Edinburgh to Falkirk Union Canal link and since the opening of the Falkirk Wheel has become a popular attraction for walkers, cyclists, canoeists and kayakers.

But the lighting along the 690 yard underground towpath has fallen into such a state of disrepair it is claimed it’s becoming dangerous to use.

Keen cyclist Grant Thomson from Morven Court in Hallglen cycles or paddles through the tunnel most weekends. But he is now concerned so many lights are broken it has become unsafe.

The 68-year-old retired plumber said: “It’s pitch black in places and led to pedestrians and cyclists going in opposite directions colliding. The traffic lights on both ends of the tunnel are also constantly on green and don’t change when a boat enters, which is also dangerous for canoeists and kayakers.

“All the work that’s been carried out on the towpaths on the canals around Falkirk has been good news and seen the volume of traffic using the tunnel increase dramatically, so its disappointing it has been allowed to get into such a dire condition.”

Scottish Canals blamed a fault in the electrical system for the problem and promised action.

Spokesman Chris McDonald said: “While the majority of lights remain operational and the tunnel is open for transits we are treating the issue as a matter of urgency and working to resolve the fault as well as inspecting the traffic lights at either end .

“In the meantime we would urge everyone using the tunnel to take extra care and advise paddlers to use waterproof head torches, hi-visibility vests and glow sticks.”