Scottish Canals


The Falkirk Wheel is one of Scotland’s top tourist attractions. The world’s only rotating boat lift, The Falkirk Wheel links the Forth & Clyde Canal with the Union Canal some 100 feet above ground level. Upon its completion in 2002, The Wheel reconnected Edinburgh and Glasgow’s waterways for the first time since the 1930s. Scottish Canals – the public corporation of the Scottish Government responsible for managing the country’s man-made waterways – has established The Falkirk Wheel as a key Scottish visitor destination; the boat lift and its associated visitor centre attract more than 500,000 annual visitors.

Hutchinson Networks was engaged by Scottish Canals to upgrade and extend the wireless network at its flagship site – The Falkirk Wheel. In line with the Scottish Government’s Digital First strategy, the project driver was to provide a rich online experience for visitors and staff no matter where they were on the site.

Read about Hutchinson Networks’ core wireless and visibility upgrade for The Falkirk Wheel by accessing the Case Study below.

We wanted a trusted partner who could deliver the solution from start to finish. Reliability and support was important for us – we wanted to make sure it was done right first time.

Andrew McSherry, Head of ICT at Scottish Canals

Key Solution Challenges & Highlights

Key Solution Challenges:

  • The network infrastructure had to be capable of withstanding high volumes of traffc whilst providing a secure, user friendly Wi-Fi experience.
  • A key requirement was to provision this service over a wide area, including the general concourse, visitor centre and restaurant.
  • The solution had to be scalable to meet with the future demands of both Scottish Canals staff and visitors.

Key Solution Highlights:

  • An extensive site survey and audit of the existing network was conducted a campus-wide snapshot of proposed future coverage. A new fit for purpose network infrastructure solution was then implemented.
  • The Cisco Meraki network infrastructure and Purple Wi-Fi solution now provides  a more user-friendly, safer and integrated Wi-Fi service for both visitors and staff.
  • The network is scalable. Due to its simple management capabilities, Cisco Meraki provides Scottish Canals with the capability for the simple expansion of Wi-Fi into other Scottish Canals Locations.