FEATURE – Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 2012/2013

Copyright Edinburgh's Hogmanay

Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 2012/2013 – Be Lucky!

Every year at Hogmanay, the eyes of the world look to Edinburgh for an example of how to bring the new year in with a bang. This year will be no exception, as the stroke of midnight will see another spectacular firework display light up the Edinburgh skies whilst thousands party on the street below.

You can download the full Hogmanay programme (PDF, opens in new window).

If you are also looking for information on Edinburgh’s Christmas, you can look at our feature with reviews.

30th December 2012

Torchlight Procession

On Sunday 30th December, the popular Torchlight Procession returns, getting the new year celebrations off to a fiery start with a procession at 7.45pm from Chambers Street (via North Bridge) to Calton Hill, where a stunning son et lumière show will entertain the torch-carrying crowds.

You can buy your torch voucher now for this family-friendly event. Proceeds from the sale of torches go to both Radio Forth Cash for Kids and Barnardo’s Scotland.

The Goddess Fortuna

Acclaimed artists Walker & Bromwich will launch their brand new installation in the Hawthornden Court at the National Museum of Scotland. Supported by the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund, their spectacular interpretation of The Goddess Fortuna will be open to the public until Tuesday 1 January 2013.

Baby Loves Hogmanay Disco

Follwing a sell-out run at the Edinburgh Fringe, Baby Loves Hogmanay Disco will take place at The Electric Circus on the 30th Decembet and the 31st. This event is suitable for parents with wee ones under 7 years old. Further information and tickets are available from the Baby Loves Disco website. 12pm – 2pm & 3pm – 5pm (both days)

EH Film Season

The EH Film Season starts at The Filmhouse on Lothian Road. Showing classics such as Whisky Galore! and The Wicker Man, the Filmhouse will be a popular place over the New Year celebrations.

31st December 2012

New year fireworks

The Street Party

On Hogmanay itself, you can go to the world famous Edinburgh Street Party, the Concert in the Gardens which is headlined by Simple Minds this year or dance the night away at The Keilidh.

The Street Party is once again expected to welcome up to 80,000 party goers from Scotland, the rest of the UK and around the world and for the first time revellers at the Street Party will all be dancing to the same beat. Unique Events are creating the world’s biggest open air nightclub and, using screens and speaker systems along the length of Princes Street, will present REW1ND3R: The Biggest Party – In Years.

Travelling through time – the REW1ND3R picks the years at random reliving the greatest moments, the unforgettable faces and the biggest tunes from the last six decades, beamed out on all the big screens and a blockrocking sound system to 80,000 party people.

The Waverley Stage returns to Waverley Bridge and will be headlined by The Maccabees who will be joined by special guests Reverend and the Makers and by The OK Social Club.

The Scottish Stage will relocate to Frederick Street and this year will be headlined by Indie-folk sextet Admiral Fallow who will be joined by special guests Lau and Shooglenifty.

With these five live stages and countdown fireworks at 9pm, 10pm and 11pm, Edinburgh’s Hogmanay once again offers an exhilarating and eclectic mix of live entertainment which will climax with the singing of the world’s largest Auld Lang Syne and the spectacular Midnight Fireworks from the ramparts of Edinburgh Castle.

Grand Hogmanay Ball

If you prefer to keep warm all evening but still party the night away, then look no further than the Grand Hogmanay Ball. Set in the spectacular Assembly Rooms, you can dance all night, drink some fizz and fill up on some haggis, neeps and tatties and that’s all before the bells!

It’s sure to be an amazing evening as it is run by Edinburgh’s leading activities group – the Sunday Brunch Club. Please note that this venue is now completely accessible.

Concert at St Giles’ Cathedral

Those seeking music of a more classical kind are also catered for, with a Candlelit Concert at St Giles’ Cathedral at 7.30pm on the 31st. It will be a celebration of music performed by St Giles’ Cathedral Choir, directed by Michael Harris, with the St Giles’ Camerata, leader Angus Ramsay, are joined by a stunning array of young soloists.

The Loony Dook

The Loony Dook

1st January 2013

Loony Dook

If you wish to start the New Year with something different, you could always take a dip in the January waters of the Forth, at the famous Loony Dook in South Queensferry. Or, like us, watch them from one of the many vantage points then retire somewhere cosy for a New Year pick-me-up! Registration to take part in the Loony Dook is now open.

Your Lucky Day (free)

Billed as ‘a whole festival in one afternoon’, Your Lucky Day is a new event which promises to be an exciting one. From 1230pm, you can your Lucky Dice at the new National Museum of Scotland Grand Gallery and let them take you on a journey through Edinburgh’s most iconic and atmospheric venues discovering performances and installations from some of Scotland’s most exciting and innovative artists and musicians.

Descriptions of the other 11 venues (which remain a secret until you throw the dice) can be found on the Hogmanay website but Lucky participants might join in the dancing at the Highland Ceilidh or the Hogmanay Hoedown, enjoy inspiring music from young Scottish singer-songwriter Rachel Sermanni or shiver at the folk song ghost story Crows Bones. They might immerse themselves in Duncan Chisholm’s Kin, a beautifully crafted journey into the past using music, narrative and film or listen to Words per Minute with author Alan Bissett; try The Luck Factor with Professor Richard Wiseman or enjoy a Scottish afternoon tea with a difference in The Lucky Tearoom. Audiences are expected to visit a number of performance destinations during the afternoon.

Venue 13, where everyone taking part can gather in the afternoon, is Buccleuch Street.  Street theatre artists Plasticiens Volants will perform the ‘Big Bang’ (complete with giant inflatables) as the spectacular finale.

There is also an amazing prize up for grabs of a VIP experience and journey around Scotland worth £2013. Anyone who has a destination 13 card (gained by throwing a double) will be entered in to the draw to win this amazing prize.

New Year’s Day Triathlon

The New Year’s Day Triathlon last took place in 2009, before the renovation of The Royal Commonwealth Pool, and race organisers are thrilled that it is returning to the city’s sporting calendar.  The New Year’s Day Triathlon is open to everyone – a fun race for those who have never done a triathlon before (usually about one third of participants are triathlon virgins) or a competitive test of winter fitness for the experienced.

The kids’ Duathlon will start at 11.30am and the Triathlon at 12.30pm, both from The Royal Commonwealth Pool.

Entries for the triathlon are available now and will close on Monday 17 December 2012.  Entry costs £50 per individual.

Dogmanay at Holyrood Park (free)

Also on New Year’s Day, the much loved Edinburgh’s Dogmanay sleddog races, presented by Edinburgh’s Hogmanay and the Scottish Sleddog Society returns to Holyrood Park.  Crowds can get up close to the action as the Alaskan Malamute, Samoyed, Canadian Eskimo Dogs, Greenland Dogs and Siberian Huskies team up for an exhilarating afternoon of sport. Timed races, using sleighs, racing riggs and scooters, will take place all afternoon with teams of 2, 3 and 4 huskies competing against each other.

The afternoon’s entertainment will also include a novelty dog show, obedience and clicker training demonstrations and visitors will have a chance to snuggle a sled-dog.

Entry to watch the races is free of charge and all varieties of two and four legged spectators are welcomed.  Edinburgh’s Dogmanay will take place in Holyrood Park, courtesy of Historic Scotland, on Tuesday 1 January 2013 from 11.30pm to 3.30pm.

New Year Sprint and Musselburgh Races

The 1st of January also sees people take part in an energetic race with the New Year Sprint held at Musselburgh Racecourse. There are actually races on the 31st as well, but the second day’s racing is due to be held in conjunction with the National Hunt meeting. The New Year Sprint final is to be televised as part of Channel 4’s coverage of the day’s events.

There is a further jump race meeting on 4th January.

Beyond the 1st of January

The Edinburgh football derby

The traditional New Year’s derby between Heart of Midlothian and Hibernian. The game is being held at Tynecastle on the 3rd of January 2013 at 7.45pm. Tickets go fast, but the game will be on TV, so you can find your nearest pub and keep warm whilst watching Edinburgh’s football clubs go head to head.

Great Winter run

The fantastic Bupa Great Winter Run is back on the 5th of January. Entries to take part are open now. The event is free to watch and is set in the stunning surroundings of Holyrood Park. Double gold medal olympian Mo Farrah has previously won the men’s race which always attracts a world class field.

Further information

Full details of all events can be found on the Edinburgh Hogmanay website and the Winter in Edinburgh website. You can follow Edinburgh’s Hogmanay on twitter @Edhogmanay and via their Facebook page. You can download a copy of the full Hogmanay brochure.

Revellers can purchase tickets for all the events in one of three ways:

Online at www.edinburghshogmanay.com;

by calling Edinburgh’s Hogmanay Box Office on 0844 573 8455 or

by calling into the Hogmanay Box Office at The Fringe Office, 180 High Street, Edinburgh.

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