Edinburgh is preparing for a full house for its Hogmanay celebrations after an improvement in the weather boosted last-minute ticket sales.
Previous Hogmanay celebrations have been disrupted by the weather
Up to 80,000 people will gather under clear skies in the self-styled “Home of Hogmanay” for the traditional street party.
Organisers say ticket sales had stalled because party-goers were having second thoughts due to the recent bad weather, but that now they are selling fast.
Edinburgh has had to cancel its Hogmanay party twice because of poor weather conditions.
The pinnacle of this year’s four-day programme of events will, of course, be the stroke of midnight tonight.
All eyes will be on Edinburgh for the world-famous event
Revellers will gather beneath Edinburgh Castle for a spectacular fireworks display and the concert stage in Princes Street Gardens will feature Biffy Clyroe as the headline act, supported by The Charlatans and Billy Bragg.
It is the 19th year that Edinburgh has laid on a structured Hogmanay celebration. It kicked off on Thursday evening with a torchlit procession which attracted more than 25,000 people.
Other events include a New Year’s Day conversation with local crime writers Ian Rankin and Lin Anderson, discussing the city of Edinburgh. KT Tunstall will play a gig during the day on January 1.
The secret of a good gig at Hogmanay is not to have any drink until you’re finished.
Singer-songwriter Billy Bragg on his Hogmanay performance
Festival organiser Pete Irvine from Unique Events, told Sky News: “A good Hogmanay programme is down to balance between making sure it’s got a lot of Scottish stuff in it – because that’s what people expect – and providing lots of contemporary and international artists as well.
“Getting the balance right between all those elements is the key and, of course, the weather does play a part as well.”
Hogmanay prompts a huge influx of visitors to Edinburgh. Last year, 78% of people attending came from outside the city. The 2009/10 party generated a net income of £24.1m for Scotland’s capital.