Canal College

canal college is almost half way through its three year plan. We are evaluating the project as it goes along so that we can keep learning, and improving the experience for young people.

We would be delighted if you can take a few minutes to respond to our brief survey by following this link: The survey asks six short questions and should take no more than 10 minutes to complete. You can respond any time before the survey closes on Friday 11th April.
Your answers will help us understand how well Canal College is doing at making a real difference to people, the environment and canal infrastructure.

If you have any questions about the survey or the independent evaluation of Canal College, please contact Scottish Waterways Trust or our external evaluator, Graeme Reekie

canal college is our most ambitious project to date and we're now well underway with this trailblazing heritage skills training initiative for young people in
Edinburgh and Falkirk.

Working with Scottish Canals, the organisation responsible for the management and development of Scotland's canals and The Falkirk Wheel, we created canal college to give young people who haven't been able to find employment or a place in further education, the chance to build their confidence and gain the skills they need to get on the pathway to work.

Our first 14 week course concluded with the terrific news that a number of our young 16-25 year old participants had secured themselves an exciting new role beginning immediately afterwards. Gael has a new job in a restaurant, Jack is working for an agency and Scott has a place at college.

canal college was created to complement our entry level skills training programme, Green Action, which was established in 2010. Of the 250 young people successfully completing Green Action, 63% have moved into work, training, education or another CV boosting volunteering position. We aim to achieve similarly impressive outcomes for canal college over the two years it will run.





Who is eligible?


canal college is open to young people living in Edinburgh or Falkirk who are between 16-25 years of age and who are not currently in employment, education or training.


Can you be a volunteer mentor?


If you are over 25 years of age and looking for an exciting, outdoors volunteering role, then become a canal college mentor? It's a great way to support young people whilst picking up some new skills, meeting new friends or boosting your own CV.


When does canal college run?


canal college runs over two days a week:


Falkirk - Monday and Tuesday, 10:00am - 4:00pm

Edinburgh - Thursday and Friday, 10:00am - 4:00pm


The next 14 week courses start week commencing Monday 23rd September.



What does everyone learn?


Scotland's two hundred year old canals are a wonderful outdoor open space, rich with built, natural and cultural history and heritage. Volunteer participants and their mentors undertake a wide range of practical projects helping conserve and enhance the Forth & Clyde and Union canals and The Falkirk Wheel.


Topics   include landscaping, tree planting and vegetation management, wildlife conservation, trail creation, canal engineering, maintenance, management and customer service.


Practical employability skills 


During canal college, there's also help on hand with job seeking, CV writing and developing interview skills.


CV boosting certificates


Awards available include the Saltire Volunteer Award, John Muir Award (Discovery Level), Youth Achievement Award and, of course, our own canal college Award.


Join canal college today


Call our canal college project co-ordinators for an informal chat or to register your interest.


Edinburgh - Danielle -  07795 645 683 /


Falkirk -  Carol - 07717 224 725 /


canal college, which is part of the wider European Green & Blue Futures programme, is supported by Scottish Canals and funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, the European Union Interreg IVB North West Europe programme and Scottish Natural Heritage up until June 2015.




HLF Scottish Canals small ERDF
SNH Green and Blue Futures