Edinburgh Airport: Mini festival for passengers

Entertainers usually seen on the Royal Mile are heading to the airport. Picture: Esme Allen
Entertainers usually seen on the Royal Mile are heading to the airport. Picture: Esme Allen
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A MINI Royal Mile showcasing festival excitement and live acts will entertain passengers walking along an outdoor corridor linking Edinburgh Airport and its tram stop.

Officials want the 250ft-long area used by passengers walking between the trams and the planned airport terminal extension to be wowed by year-long exhibitions and acts.

Use of the outdoor arena would not be limited to July and August, with planners keen to see the space used as a year-round outdoor arts platform. The dead space is being improved as part of the 
£150 million investment owner Global Infrastructure Partners [GIP] outlined yesterday as part of its five-year vision.

The area will run off the southern entrance to a £25m terminal extension, which will include a new state-of-the-art security area designed to slash queues.

Airport chief executive Gordon Dewar said: “We think there may be an opportunity to do something around what we would call a festival space.

“When the Festival’s on, we can have acts going on there. At other times of the year, we will maybe do art 

“We want to make sure the space presents Scotland in the best possible light.”

As sponsors of the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival, the airport has already staged several one-off performances, but has never run regular Festival entertainment.

Charlie Wood, co-director at Underbelly, welcomed the airport’s gateway arts proposal. “It would be great. Anything to add to the diversity, colour and geography of the Festival is more than welcome.”

Green culture spokesman Councillor Chas Booth said: “The festivals collectively can be a little overwhelming because there’s so much choice and variety. The Royal Mile works quite well because it gives little tasters to people.

“If it was possible to replicate something like that in other venues [like the airport], then that’s a really interesting idea.”