Families from across the Forth Valley and beyond are expected to flock to the Canal Carnival 2019 at the Falkirk Wheel this weekend.
The free event, organised to mark the re-opening of the Forth and Clyde Canal will feature more than 70 steamboats, Clyde Puffers and coastal rowboats.
People are invited to go along on Saturday to cheer on the boats and take part in a host of activities at the world’s only rotating boat lift as part of the canal celebrations.
The flotilla is set to depart from 10am with a piper at the helm, followed by live music
and entertainment throughout the day until 4pm.
Attractions on the day include Scottish Canals’ own environment and heritage hubs,
where kids and grown-ups alike can participate in activities including pond-dipping
and learning about the 250-year-old stories of the canals.
The RSPB will also be in attendance, alongside a mini petting zoo for all the animal lovers and Edinburgh Model Boat club will be giving demonstrations after the flotilla departs.
Ramblers Scotland will be taking participants on led walks at 12.30pm and 2pm around the area, taking in the canal, Antonine Wall and Charlie’s Stanes.
Catherine Topley, chief executive of Scottish Canals, said: “The re-opening of the Forth and Clyde Canal to sea-to-sea traffic is a momentous occasion and there’s no better way to celebrate it than with a floating festival featuring the huge array of
users who enjoy using the historic waterway.
“The Carnival shows that, even more than two centuries after it was first carved through the heart of Scotland, the Forth and Clyde Canal continues to play a vital role
in communities on its banks.
“Thanks to Scottish Government funding, we’re delighted to re-open it to boat traffic.”
The Falkirk Wheel’s play areas, splash park and water activities such as bumper
boats and zorbs will be open as usual, and attendees can enjoy a bite to eat in the
Visitor Centre Café or outdoor Pizza Oven and Airstream pods.
Margaret Cook, publicity officer for Stirling, Falkirk and District Ramblers said: “Our
group provides a walk every week, usually on a Sunday. We have often incorporated
the canal paths in our walks in the Falkirk area and are pleased that we will once again see boats on the Lowland canals, making the walks more interesting.
“We are looking forward to the carnival and welcoming people on our walks to give them a taste of walking with the Ramblers.”