Major events lined up for the Capital in 2017

Edinburgh is synonymous with truly spectacular events and the coming year is bound to set the bar even higher.

A report to the City of Edinburgh Council’s Culture and Sport Committee on Wednesday (14 December) details some of the key festivals and events set to take place in the Capital in 2017.

Marking the 70th anniversary of Edinburgh, the Festival City, 2017 will take off in spectacular fashion with an enhanced midnight moment during Edinburgh’s Hogmanay. The special display will see a laser, light and firework show usher in a year of celebrations marking the milestone year.

This will be followed by another key anniversary for the city in early spring. The 250th year of the adoption of James Craig’s the New Town Plan will be commemorated with special effects and projection techniques along George Street and St Andrew Square.  Drawing attention to the New Town’s unique history and heritage, the event is set to be a highlight of the Scottish Government’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology. It will be held in association with the Council, VisitScotland, ETAG, Edinburgh World Heritage and Essential Edinburgh.

In sport, double Olympic gold medal winner Mo Farah looks likely to get 2017 off to a racing start in Edinburgh. He is due to embrace the cold once more for another exciting duel against the American runner Garrett Heath, who was the only man to beat him in a race this year. The Great Edinburgh Cross Country will take place on 7 January in Holyrood Park, along with the Great Winter Run 5k road race, which is described as the perfect event to blow away the winter cobwebs. You can enter here, and both events are free for spectators. 

Causing a splash at the Royal Commonwealth Pool, the Edinburgh International Swim Meet will take place in March with some top-level swimmers before the venue plays host to the GB Synchronised Swimming Championships for the first time in April. This will be followed by another major aquatics event for Edinburgh, the British Diving Championships in June. The final should see Tom Daley and Edinburgh’s own Olympic diver Grace Reid take part.

Other sporting highlights will include the European Professional Club Rugby Championships at Murrayfield in May; Edinburgh’s inaugural Ironman 70.3  Triathlon in July; the Grand Depart of the Tour of Britain in September; and the IFSC Climbing World Cup coming for the first time to the Edinburgh International Climbing Arena in September.

Councillor Richard Lewis, Festivals and Events Champion, said: “2017 promises to be an unforgettable year of celebration in the Capital. For 70 years now, Edinburgh has delivered the world’s best festivals and 2017 will celebrate our longstanding status as ‘The Festival City’. 

“Increasingly, Edinburgh is also becoming renowned as an Events Capital and the city’s calendar next year will be packed. Our sporting venues look set to host some truly world class events in 2017 covering cycling, rugby, running, diving, climbing and swimming. Residents are in store for a range of top events on their doorstep and we are looking forward to welcoming thousands of visitors to enjoy all that the city will have on to offer.”

For details of what’s on in Edinburgh, visit


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