Business leaders today said bringing the Tall Ships back to Aberdeen would have a “hugely beneficial” effect on the local economy.
Aberdeen City Council’s finance committee is to discuss a three-year events strategy next week and will look into the possibility of trying to bring one of Europe’s Tall Ship Races to the area.
It is one of a number of new events – including the Great Aberdeen Run – to be mooted for funding along with established initiatives such as the SPECTRA light festival and the city’s jazz festival.
Adrian Watson, chief executive of Aberdeen Inspired, said the business group was “supportive” of bringing events like these to the region because “the effect these can have on local businesses is hugely beneficial”.
He added: “Feedback in recent years from our levy payers has illustrated a demand for more large scale events to be held in Aberdeen and we have made it a priority to address this.
“We recently put on the inaugural Aberdeen Comedy Festival and will also be bringing the globally renowned Nuart Festival to the city next year.
“Larger events such as these and the Tall Ships spectacle undoubtedly have the potential to bring a positive economic impact to the area they are within and we hope this comes to fruition.”
Around half-a-million visitors set sail for the Granite City when a Cutty Sark Tall Ships Race – the event’s name between 1973 and 2003 – took place in 1997, bringing in a cash boost of around
The four-day gathering was touted as one of the UK’s largest free family events that year and saw dozens of ships with thousands of crew from around 20 countries attend.
A number of fringe events popped up on the back of the regatta, including a street parade and fireworks display.
In 1991, more than 310,000 people came to see the vessels, with around 285,000 of that number on holiday in Aberdeen or on a day trip connected with the Tall Ships.