Building Bridges K’NEX Giveaway



The pictures are in from our K'NEX Building Bridges giveaway.

In celebration of the Union Chain Bridge's bicentenary in July we distributed K'NEX Building Bridges packs, as birthday gifts, to local families on both sides of the border. The 20 recipients, all aged between 8 and 13, have since been busy building the different designs and have sent us some photos of their hard work. Scroll down to the bottom of the page to see the picture gallery of K’NEX creations local children have built with the packs.

On Sunday the 26th July 2020, the Union Chain Bridge had been officially open to the public for 200 years. To mark the bicentenary date, a programme of digital events took place throughout the day. The programme included many different events and activities. There was plenty to read, do, watch, and get involved with, including:

-an online publication of an article about the 1820 grand opening ceremony (which you can read here)

-a craft activity making your own paper model of the Union Chain Bridge (which you can do here)

-the première of the 200th birthday bicentenary film (which you can watch here)

-an invitation for Union Chain Bridge stories and memories from the public (which is still open – get in touch to submit yours at

And last, but not least …

-a STEM kit give-away in the local community: a competition open to children in the local community to win a free science and technology toy, a K’nex Building Bridges pack.

The K'NEX Building Bridges pack contain all the pieces children need to create 13 different functioning replicas of real-life bridges that include engineering features, such as arches, trusses, and suspension cables. In fact, the suspension bridge design in the K’NEX pack has many of the same features that the Union Chain Bridge does in real life.

A total of 20 K'NEX Building Bridges packs were given away in the area around the Union Chain Bridge and as far as Berwick, Duns, Etal, and Galashiels. All were given to families who live with, or regularly take care of, children between the ages of 8 and 13.

The pictorial results of this giveaway are now in! Parents and carers from all around the local area have been in touch and, as I’m sure you’ll agree, the children look like they’ve had a lot of fun being mini civil engineers. Scroll down the page to see the gallery of the children’s bridge models. Some families even took a trip out to the Union Chain Bridge itself to see the similarities and differences between their suspension bridge in K’NEX and the real thing. Of course, when the bridge was still open!

Although this particular competition is now closed, there are still plenty of opportunities to get involved with the Union Chain Bridge project. We are currently recruiting for Archive Volunteers to help with archival research. Fully supported by the Union Chain Bridge team, these volunteers will have the opportunity to access archived documents and study their contents for new and exciting information. In due course, we will also be recruiting for Archaeology Volunteers, Conservation Volunteers, Learning and Outreach Volunteers, Interpretation Volunteers, and Guided Walks Volunteers. To register your interest, get in touch with us at