Hogmanay: Police Scotland urges people to 'plan ahead' if going out in Edinburgh amid event cancellations and venue restrictions

Police Scotland has said officers will be deployed across the city on Friday night to ensure everyone can enjoy Hogmanay safely following the cancellation of the official celebrations amid rising coronavirus case numbers.

Friday, 31st December 2021, 8:39 am

Nicola Sturgeon announced measures last week limiting the celebration of the New Year, including number restrictions on indoor and outdoor events and harsher hospitality rules coming into force.

She also urged people to “stay at home as much as possible” until at least the first week of January.

Police in Edinburgh have now announced that they will be out in force to ensure the evening goes smoothly for those who do decide to go out and celebrate.

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Superintendent Mark Rennie from St Leonard’s Police Station said: “Although planned events in Scotland’s capital have been cancelled this year as a result of the Coronavirus, we will have a significant police resource available to ensure everyone keeps safe during the night.

“Our officers will be joined by volunteers from Street Assist Edinburgh and other outreach services who will be on hand to offer help and support."

As well as having dedicated police officers out on foot, Superintendent Rennie said support from the City of Edinburgh Council will be provided including taxi marshals, environmental wardens, night teams and CCTV operators to prevent incidents from escalating and to ensure that everyone gets home safely.

Hogmanay: Police Scotland urges people to 'plan ahead' if going out in Edinburgh amid event cancellations and venue restrictions

He continued: “If you are intending on visiting the city centre please ensure you plan your night, as licensed premises are operating at a significantly reduced capacity, with some operating a booking system.

"It is also important that you have a plan for getting home before you go out, keep your mobile phone charged, look after your valuables and keep an eye on how much alcohol you drink as overindulgence can impact on your behaviour.

“Finally, I’d like to wish the residents, visitors and businesses of Edinburgh a Happy New Year from all of us at Edinburgh City Division”

Edinburgh isn’t the only city impacted, with Hogmanay street parties across Scotland having been cancelled due to crowds at outdoor public events being capped at 500 since Boxing Day, for at least three weeks, and numbers at indoor public events limited to 100 standing or 200 seated.

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