Edinburgh's Festive attractions declared re-open despite Storm Barbara

It takes more than a gust of wind to cancel Christmas but severe gales across the Capital disrupted city centre festive frolics.

Friday, 23rd December 2016, 3:29 pm
Updated Thursday, 29th December 2016, 3:29 pm
Edinburgh's Christmas is back on despite the bad weather. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Strong winds of up to 70mph have whipped through the city which forced the organisers of the Capital’s Christmas and Hogmanay celebrations to call it quits on a number of festive attractions.

But thankfully crimbo capers have returned as Edinburgh’s Christmas, who had announced the closure of St Andrews Square including the Starflyer ride, the Big Wheel,the climbing wall and the Scottish market, declared the attractions re-open.

However, the impenetrable defences of the city’s iconic castle remain beaten by the wind, nicknamed Storm Barbara, and the ramparts remain shuttered against the elements.

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Damage to the christmas tree at Haymarket. Picture: Anna Stephenson

A spokesperson for Historic Environment Scotland, said: “Due to the adverse weather conditions brought by Storm Barbara, we took the decision to temporarily close Edinburgh Castle. The safety of our visitors and staff is paramount and we will continue to monitor weather conditions over the course of today.

“To avoid disappointment, we would advise visitors to check for possible unexpected closures prior to visiting any of our sites.”

The closures come in response to a yellow weather warning issued by the Met Office where gusts of up to 70mph are predicted to hit the city throughout the day.

Forecasters have warned Storm Barbara could cause structural damage as well as disruption to power supplies and travel.

Damage to the christmas tree at Haymarket. Picture: Anna Stephenson

And restrictions are already in place on the Forth Road Bridge with passage denied to high sided vehicles, cars with trailers, caravans, motorcycles, bicycles and pedestrians.

Scottish Citylink also warned of expected delays to M90/M91/M92 services with the alternate route adding approximately 30 minutes to journey times.

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