Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Edinburgh's Christmas ticket sales rise

Edinburgh's Christmas Image copyright Darren Bradley
Image caption The fireworks will finish up with the midnight spectacular from the Castle and Calton Hill

Edinburgh's Christmas festival has reported a 40% rise in ticket buyers on the previous year.

There were over half a million tickets sold for shows and attractions and footfall was up 5% in the city centre.

Officials said the increase could, in part, be due to a discount scheme for local residents following complaints.

Meanwhile, Edinburgh City Council denied reports of crushing at the city's Hogmanay celebrations.

It said it would be carrying out the usual review of Hogmanay celebrations with the event organisers and emergency services.

Officials said parts of the cordoned off area at the top of the mound were busy but they denied there was congestion or crushing. No one was injured.

'Listened to concerns'

Charlie Wood, Edinburgh's Christmas producer, said: "We are obviously thrilled at the figures. It demonstrates the scale and attraction of the festival.

"We set out to make Edinburgh's Christmas one of the world's best places to be at Christmas time and these figures show that we're on our way to achieving that.

"It is also gratifying to note that almost one in five of the tickets sold was at a special discount offered to local families - showing that we listened to concerns from the previous year, addressed them and helped deliver a Christmas celebration for the residents of Edinburgh.

"As ever, we will be working in the next few months to see what worked well, what didn't work so well, and how we can improve the festival to make sure that next year's is an even greater success for the people of the city and visitors to the city to look forward to and enjoy."

Steve Cardownie, Edinburgh's festivals and events champion, said: "Our winter festivals are the envy of the world and rightly so.

"This has been another record-breaking year, and the huge boost to footfall is good news for city centre businesses and the local economy."

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