Edinburgh sets sights on star-studded future

Beyonce performs at the 2003 MTV Europe Music Awards at Ocean Terminal. Picture: Getty

Beyonce performs at the 2003 MTV Europe Music Awards at Ocean Terminal. Picture: Getty

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IT was a night that saw worldwide superstars descend on Leith, wearing their gladrags and attracting thousands of visitors from across the globe.

Beyoncê, Christina Aguilera and Justin Timberlake were just three of the famous faces that flew in for the MTV Europe Music Awards in 2003, when it was held in Leith.

But now, council chiefs are hoping to attract events of this scale to the Capital every year, under new plans to be put before councillors next week.

The proposals, produced following consultation with professionals from the tourism and events industry, aim to bring one brand new event of national or international standing to the city during its quieter months.

If the plans are approved, they will align with a new events framework set out for the rest of Scotland, and will boost Edinburgh’s economy outside of the festivals period.

Councillor Richard Lewis, Edinburgh’s festivals and events leader, said: “Edinburgh has built a world-wide reputation for hosting high profile events and festivals. We need to draw on our capital city status, our world-class venues and our iconic cityscape to continue enticing excellent events to the city.

“A new, nationally aligned strategy will help us achieve this.

“All of our events, from the council’s annual Winter Festival programme to unique sporting and cultural activities, help make Edinburgh a great place in which to live, work, study and visit.

“I hope our new approach, which has been developed with the support of professionals from right across the events industry, will guide our aspirations for the next decade.”

The new plans will replace the city’s 2006 strategy, which helped stage more than 1000 one-off indoor and outdoor events over the decade.

Highlights included the 2014 Commonwealth Games diving events and Queen’s baton relay, the Papal visit in 2010, the world cross country championships in 2008 in Holyrood Park, and a major stage of the Tour of Britain cycling series in 2015.

Paul Bush, VisitScotland’s director of events, said: “We are delighted that Edinburgh has introduced a new strategic vision for events in the city, which directly aligns with Scotland’s national event strategy, Scotland the Perfect Stage.”

He added: “Scotland’s Capital can boast some of the most high-profile and valuable event properties in the world, including Edinburgh’s festivals, Edinburgh’s Hogmanay and the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.”IT was a night that saw worldwide superstars descend on Leith, wearing their gladrags and attracting thousands of visitors from across the globe.

Beyoncê, Christina Aguilera and Justin Timberlake were just three of the famous faces that flew in for the MTV Europe Music Awards in 2003, when it was held in Leith.

But now, council chiefs are hoping to attract events of this scale to the Capital every year, under new plans to be put before councillors next week.

The proposals, produced following consultation with professionals from the tourism and events industry, aim to bring one brand new event of national or international standing to the city during its quieter months.

If the plans are approved, they will align with a new events framework set out for the rest of Scotland, and will boost Edinburgh’s economy outside of the festivals period.

Councillor Richard Lewis, Edinburgh’s festivals and events leader, said: “Edinburgh has built a world-wide reputation for hosting high profile events and festivals. We need to draw on our capital city status, our world-class venues and our iconic cityscape to continue enticing excellent events to the city.

“A new, nationally aligned strategy will help us achieve this.

“All of our events, from the council’s annual Winter Festival programme to unique sporting and cultural activities, help make Edinburgh a great place in which to live, work, study and visit.

“I hope our new approach, which has been developed with the support of professionals from right across the events industry, will guide our aspirations for the next decade.”

The new plans will replace the city’s 2006 strategy, which helped stage more than 1000 one-off indoor and outdoor events over the decade.

Highlights included the 2014 Commonwealth Games diving events and Queen’s baton relay, the Papal visit in 2010, the world cross country championships in 2008 in Holyrood Park, and a major stage of the Tour of Britain cycling series in 2015.

Paul Bush, VisitScotland’s director of events, said: “We are delighted that Edinburgh has introduced a new strategic vision for events in the city, which directly aligns with Scotland’s national event strategy, Scotland the Perfect Stage.”

He added: “Scotland’s Capital can boast some of the most high-profile and valuable event properties in the world, including Edinburgh’s festivals, Edinburgh’s Hogmanay and the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.”