GENERATIONS of Leithers learned to swim there, but a new festival coming to the Capital’s port later this month, has very different plans for Dr Bell’s Baths – the EH6 Festival will see them reinvented as an all-year-round live music venue.
The transformation of the Victorian swimming pool is the brainchild of EH6 Festival director Michael Ward, who has signed up more than 100 acts, including headliners Big Country, Alabama 3, The Filthy Tongues, Space and Sham 69 for the two-day event.
“It is a really exciting time for us,” he says, “We have iconic acts popping up in new venues throughout Leith.
“In particular, Dr Bell’s Baths, which is being transformed for this event.
“Edinburgh is crying out for great music venues and I’m delighted to be opening this as a full-time music and arts venue, kicking off with EH6.”
Bringing local and international talent to the city, the EH6 Festival will run over the weekend of October 21-22, across 11 venues.
“This is a completely unique festival to Scotland,” explains Ward.
“It highlights some of the great venues and spaces in the city and gives a platform to artists both new and established to play to new crowds in local venues.”
He adds, “It’s also a chance to showcase Leith – this is a melting pot for diversity and culture and we reflect that in the range of entertainment, food and drink.
“This festival is about inclusivity and celebrating talent.”
As well as the star names an impressive line-up of home-grown talent will also be showcased at EH6, acts such as Blue Rose Code, Miracle Glass Company and The Rising Souls. Making the trip through from Glasgow to add to the experience will be Phil Campbell and Tijuana Bibles.
Revellers also have the chance to catch Gerry Cinnamon who recently sold out his Barrowland gig in just a few hours.
“It’s been a challenge to organise a scattered festival with so many acts,” admits Ward.
“We started planning this in February and the first line-up was announced in March.
“I want to establish EH6 as a regular event in Scotland’s music calendar so we needed some big names to come on board.
“We have been overwhelmed by the support from acts and the community in Leith.”
However, the EH6 Craft Beer, Food & Music Festival, to give the event its full title, is not just about the music.
Festival-goers can also enjoy a Scottish beer market with Linlithgow-based Krafty Brew who specialise in creating personalised and limited edition brews. Beer lovers will also be able to toast the musical celebrations with a variety of beers from local brewers such as Ferry Brewery and Alechemy.
Simultaneously, international food vendors will be popping up throughout the area.
The festival will also feature comedy, art exhibitions and children’s entrainment.
“EH6 has something for everyone, but we hope families will come and enjoy day passes with us,” says Ward.
“Whether it’s the unique beer or the incredible acts you’re interested in, we know you’ll be in great company in Leith’s venues.”
The EH6 Festival runs at venues across Leith on Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 October, tickets range from £22.50 for day pass to full weekend VIP passes at £78.
EH6 will be donating tickets to Dunedin Harbour Homeless Hostel in Leith, inviting their service users to enjoy acts, offering free food and entertainment to them over the weekend.
Full details of ticket options can be found at www.skiddle.com/festivals/eh6-festival/