Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Edinburgh gears up for Hogmanay events

Hogmanay in Edinburgh
Image caption Edinburgh's Hogmanay celebrations are to feature a huge fireworks display

Edinburgh's Hogmanay celebrations are to feature the longest firework display in the history of the event.

A total of 5.5 tonnes of fireworks, producing more than 15,000 stars, will be let off during the display over Edinburgh Castle.

Visitors are expected from more than 50 countries for the three-day event which starts on Friday.

The events begin with 6,500 people carrying a torch in the Torchlight Procession at 18:30 on Friday.

The procession leaves from Parliament Square and ends up at the Son et Lumiere and fireworks finale on Calton Hill.

The Mound, George IV Bridge, North Bridge, Leith Street and Waverley Bridge will close at 17:30, reopening at about 21:00.

Then on Hogmanay the street party will be held, with headliners Primal Scream in the Concert in the Gardens, as well as a huge fireworks display.

The Met Office is predicting a "generally dry night" with the possibility of some showers reaching the capital, although temperatures are likely to stay above freezing.

Organisers are warning revellers to wrap up warm for the street party and not to bring glass bottles.

Traffic disruptions are also set to hit the capital as preparations get under way with several roads being closed in the run up to, and during, the three-day event.

Image caption The fireworks for Hogmanay were installed at Edinburgh Castle on Thursday

The High Street, St Giles' Street and George IV Bridge (northbound) will be closed at 16:00 on New Year's Eve, with all roads in the city centre not already closed off shutting to traffic until Sunday morning.

George Street will be closed at 21:00, with Leith street, Waterloo Place and North and South Bridge closing to cars from 22:00 on Saturday until 10:00 on New Year's Day.

The New Year Games on New Year's Day will see The Grassmarket and West Port closed between 13:00 and 19:00 with King Stables road shut between 17:00 and 19:00.

Lothian Buses is running a free night service from midnight until 04:00 on New Year's Day.

Pete Irvine, creative director of Edinburgh's Hogmanay, said: "With four of the six ticketed events already sold out, we are looking forward to a fantastic Hogmanay.

"Edinburgh's Hogmanay has a worldwide reputation, and we are delighted that, once again, revellers are travelling from around the globe to join us.

Image caption Primal Scream will play their 1991 album Screamadelica in its entirety for the last time

"And if you can't make it in person this year - join us online for the first time and log onto the live streaming of the event."

Twenty four acts will perform across seven stages at Edinburgh's Hogmanay Street Party, Concert in the Gardens and The Keilidh, while 3,000 people will dance through the bells at the traditional outdoor ceilidh.

There will be 17 camera positions to capture the performances and atmosphere which will be broadcasting onto eight giant screens in and around Princes Street in the street party arena.

Edinburgh's Hogmanay will be broadcast to over one billion people in 150 countries.

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