Edinburgh's hogmanay delivers spectacular start to 2012
Initial reports this morning (Sun 1 January 2012) suggest that Edinburgh's Hogmanay Street Party has been a major success and retained its prestigious, world-wide reputation as the home of Hogmanay.
According to the City of Edinburgh Council and Unique Events, the producers of Edinburgh's Hogmanay, an estimated 80,000 revellers celebrated the New Year at the Street Party, Concert in the Gardens and The Keilidh, where party-goers from far and wide enjoyed top class music and entertainment across seven stages.
Scottish rockers Primal Scream, Bombay Bicycle Club and Sons & Daughters wowed the crowds at the sell-out Concert in the Gardens.
Leading Scottish and international artists also entertained revellers on five stages along the length of Princes Street. Among the highlights were The Vaccines, Friendly Fires, DJ Mark Ronson and, on the new Scott Monument Stage, Peatbog Faeries and Capercaillie.
The Keilidh saw around 2750 revellers enjoying Scottish roots artists including Hugh McDiarmid's Haircut and Ceilidhdonia as well as fun on the Edinburgh Wheel and Carousel.
At midnight, the fireworks provided a breathtaking spectacle to welcome in 2012 with the longest display in the 19-year history of the event.
Partygoers were generally very good-natured and waited patiently as police and stewards checked their tickets and bags at the entrance gates.
Assistant Chief Constable Iain Livingstone, from Lothian and Borders Police, said: "On behalf of Lothian and Borders Police, I would like to thank those who attended the street party for co-operating with police and stewards and helping us to ensure that the event was safe and enjoyable for everyone involved.
"I would also like to thank all of our partners - Council, organisers, and the emergency services - for their assistance and co-operation this evening, and throughout the planning stages.
"Together we are pleased to have played our part in ensuring that this year has been yet another great success for Edinburgh. May I take this opportunity to wish everyone well for 2012, and we look forward to next year's Hogmanay celebrations."
There were three arrests for minor breach of the peace within the arena, and a very well behaved crowd resulted in low numbers of casualties being sent to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary with minor injuries. These are preliminary figures and will be updated in due course.
Edinburgh's Festivals and Events Champion, Councillor Steve Cardownie, said: "Edinburgh's Hogmanay celebrations have long been the envy of cities across the globe and this year it became official: this is THE best place to see in the New Year. With one of the best ever artist line-ups and an absolutely phenomenal fireworks display, tonight has been a truly fantastic event, bringing together 80,000 revellers from all over the world to bring in the bells in the heart of Scotland's Capital."
Pete Irvine, Director, Unique Events said: "What a great night. It's certainly been one of the best Hogmanay events ever - world class bands, spectacular fireworks and a brilliant atmosphere on the Street. We have certainly launched 2012 in style."
The big clean-up began at around 3am, after the celebrations ended. With Council staff from Services for Communities clearing up, most of the 60 to 75 tonnes of refuse will be collected by the middle of the morning. The majority of the waste will be plastic bottles, with the remainder made up of food cartons, clothing and glass. This year, the Council is working closely with Unique Events to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill: there were recycling bins at entrance points for packaging and glass waste.
The entertainment continues today with a programme of activities for all the family. For the hardy, the sold out Loony Dook - the annual New Year's Day dip in the River Forth - will start off with a Dookers Parade through South Queensferry featuring pipers and a host of entertainment, followed by the brave (or daft) Loony Dookers. For those not quite brave enough to take the plunge, there are plenty of vantage points to watch the action and spectators are welcomed.
Revellers are also invited to come and play at the all new event The New Year Games which will take place in the Grassmarket and around the Old Town. Two teams - the Uppies and Doonies - will play games in four stunning venues - Dancebase, The Hub, St Giles Cathedral and the National Museum of Scotland.
Working with innovative Scottish artists and game design studio Hide&Seek, Edinburgh's Hogmanay has re-imagined some of the traditional Scottish street games with the support of the Scottish Government's Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund. Giant board games, re-imagined classics, secret missions and a huge playground in the Grassmarket invite residents and visitors to play, participate or just spectate in a fun-filled afternoon of mental stimulation and physical challenges.
Edinburgh's Hogmanay is produced for the City of Edinburgh Council by Unique Events. The City of Edinburgh Council would like to thank the following for their support & commitment to Edinburgh's Hogmanay:, EventScotland, Scotland's Winter Festivals, The Scottish Government's Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund, Scottish Enterprise.
They would also like to thank G4S, Crabbies, Arnold Clark Car & Van Rental and Haggis Adventures for their support and The Scotsman - official Newspaper of Edinburgh's Hogmanay and Radio Forth - Edinburgh's Hogmanay official Radio Station. Thanks also go to Historic Scotland.