Edinburgh's Hogmanay: Street party sells out weeks ahead of return of new year festival

Edinburgh's Hogmanay street party has been declared a sell-out several weeks ahead of the return of the event for the first time in three years.

All 30,000 tickets were snapped up over the weekend – with more than half of the audience due to travel from outside Scotland for the festivities.

The street party, which is returning with a reduced capacity for the first new year festival able to be staged since the Covid pandemic, does not normally sell out until after Christmas.

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Organisers have also warned supplies are running low for the flagship Concert in the Gardens event featuring the Pet Shop Boys – which has a 10,000-strong capacity.

Edinburgh's Hogmanay street party will be returning for the first time since 2019. Picture: Chris Watt

The return of the Hogmanay street party was announced in October by Unique Events and Assembly, the two companies who have secured a new contract with more £4 million for up to five years.

They have pegged the capacity at 30,000 for their first year, half of what it was before the pandemic, to reduce possible crowd congestion in the main arena, which will be around the same size as previously, accessible from the top of The Mound, the east end of Princes Street and Frederick Street.

The street party event will see the return of Edinburgh's world famous ‘midnight moment’ fireworks display while every reveller will be issued with an LED wristband to help create dazzling special effects in the crowd to coincide with music played by the event’s DJs.

Efforts to revive the Hogmanay festival had to be abandoned last December in the face of growing concerns about a new Covid variant, which saw the Scottish Government eventually pull the plug on all major events just before Christmas, weeks after the Public Health Scotland agency advised the public to avoid festive celebrations.

Edinburgh's 'midnight moment' Hogmanay fireworks are set to return for the first time since 2019. Picture: Keith Valentine

A spokeswoman for Edinburgh's Hogmanay said: “It’s great news that the street party has proved so popular, and with over 50 per cent of tickets sold to people from outside Scotland, but within the UK, we’re looking forward to welcoming thousands of visitors to Edinburgh.

“With street party tickets now sold out, we’ve released a limited number of tickets for Concert in the Gardens enclosure but these, and the remaining gardens tickets, are now the only way to join us on Hogmanay.”

Roddy Smith, chief executive of city centre business group Essential Edinburgh, said: ‘“The Hogmanay period is a crucial time for city centre retailers, leisure and hospitality businesses, and we must continue to make sure we offer a great product for residents and visitors alike.

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"Unique and Assembly have certainly done that this year and we look forward to a great Edinburgh celebration to bring in the new year.”

Council leader Cammy Day said: "We’re eagerly anticipating our three-day Hogmanay programme, with celebrations including a Festival of Ceilidhs, family-friendly events in Sprogmanay and the Candlelit Concert at St Giles’ Cathedral.

“I can’t wait to see our famous ‘midnight moment’ beamed to TV screens across the world once more.

“The value of our winter festivals is unquestionable. They contribute significantly to our residents’ wellbeing, providing a whole range of inclusive, enjoyable activities for all ages, while also bringing significant benefits to the local economy – and to Scotland as a whole – supporting jobs in tourism, hospitality and leisure throughout the winter months.”

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