Crime crackdown to protect Festival visitors

Festival season attracts large crowds and targets for thieves. Picture: Joey Kelly
Festival season attracts large crowds and targets for thieves. Picture: Joey Kelly
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FESTIVAL visitors are being given advice on how to identify Scottish banknotes and avoid ticket touts as the August extravanganza gets under way.

Hundreds of thousands of revellers are set to join the Capital’s residents for a host of artistic performances and events, culminating in the fireworks display at the end of August.

Always keep an eye on your valuables when you’re out enjoying the sights and events

Mark Williams

Police said there will be a high-visibility presence throughout the city centre, with officers on hand to dish out useful advice aimed at preventing the public being preyed upon by criminals.

Among the tips published on the Police Scotland website, visitors are advised to thoroughly research accommodation before booking, avoid using phones while driving and get to know their new notes.

Police chiefs said they would do everything possible to make sure the Capital was a safe place while under the watching eyes of the world.

Chief Superintendent Mark Williams, divisional commander for the City of Edinburgh, said: “The Edinburgh Festival is a fantastic spectacle and results in worldwide attention for the city.

“We will be doing everything we can to prevent crime happening in the first place and I would appeal to the public to help us in that effort.

“By taking a number of simple steps, visitors and locals can ensure their experience of the Festival is memorable for all the right reasons.

“Remember to always keep an eye on your valuables when you’re out enjoying the sights and events within Edinburgh and never leave any belongings unattended.

“If you are enjoying the nightlife then please make sure you drink responsibly and have a plan to get home.

“This year, for the first time, we have helpful advice for tourists and visitors online that they can access before they ­arrive in the city, so that they can equip themselves with all the information they need to safeguard themselves against opportunistic criminals.

“I would ask anyone planning on visiting Edinburgh in the coming weeks to visit our tourist and visitors advice page on the Police Scotland website.”

Council chiefs said they would be working with the police to make sure visitors were left with a positive lasting impression of their trip to Edinbugh.

Community safety leader Councillor Cammy Day said: “Our environmental wardens will be working closely with Police Scotland in the city centre over the Festival period to help keep people safe and offer reassurance through a high visibility presence.

“I would encourage people to do their bit, too, by acting responsibly and taking time to look at the latest safety advice.

“Edinburgh is a safe city and we want to maintain this, ensuring that visitors enjoying the Festival have the best possible experience of the city.”

newsen@edinburghnews.com