On Thursday, 22nd May at 8.45am the Scottish Government’s Minister for Energy, Enterprise and Tourism Fergus Ewing MSP witnessed the early stages of the assembly of the Tattoo’s Castle Esplanade amphitheatre as the countdown for Edinburgh’s 65th military showpiece event begins, ahead of opening night on August 1st.
Tattoo Chief Executive and Producer, Brigadier David Allfrey, was on hand to welcome and update the Minister - a passionate champion and Ambassador for the Tattoo - on the flagship event’s forthcoming season, which celebrates ‘Our Home, Friends and Family’ as Scotland welcomes the world to join in the exciting Year of Homecoming.
Tourism Minister Fergus Ewing said: “Edinburgh’s Military Tattoo plays an iconic, world-renowned and financially sustainable role in the Edinburgh Festivals programme every year.
“The Tattoo’s cosmopolitan nature not only attracts around 100 million viewers who watch it on international television, but the stunning backdrop and traditions it showcases helps put Scotland confidently on the map.
“I am delighted that this year’s theme of “Our Home, Friends and Family” reflects our Homecoming 2014 celebrations and that the Scottish Government can continue to work with the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo to attract visitors and entertain a huge, global audience.”
Brigadier David Allfrey, the Tattoo’s Chief Executive and Producer, commented:
“Supported with funds from the Scottish Government, our new grandstands, first assembled in 2011, allow us to offer our worldwide audience one of the most extraordinary entertainment venues in the World. The stands, erected by Livingston-based construction firm Interserve, will be built in less than 40 days and this represents the start of the ‘countdown’ to August.
“We are proud the Tattoo continues to play a central role on Scotland’s entertainment calendar while continuing to add value to both the local and national economies, underpinned for the thirteenth uninterrupted year by the generous support of our partner Royal Bank of Scotland. We are delighted to be a part of the wider endeavour and thrilled to be playing our part in growing tourism in Scotland.”
Scotland’s Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo is worth more than £77 million to the Scottish economy, according to an independent survey produced by leading UK economic research consultancy, Ekos.
The internationally acclaimed event is said to generate, each year, net additional visitor expenditure of £64.1 million for Edinburgh, and £77.7 million for Scotland. Substantial tourist spending that in turn also supported the equivalent of 1,282 and 1,896 annual full-time equivalent jobs.
2013 marked the 15th successive sold-out season for Edinburgh’s world-famous military event, generating some £8.7 million in box office receipts. As well as the 220,000 live audience across August, the Tattoo is also seen by a further 100 million people who tune in to watch the highlights on international television.
Thursday’s photo opportunity provided the first glimpse of preparations for the approaching 2014 Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo (1-23 August).