The weather may have been be more grey than silver at the start of the school summer holidays, but that did not take the shine off the latest in a series of events which are all playing a part in bringing Aberdeen to life.
At the start of this month it was the turn of Silver City Stories to take centre stage, with a packed programme taking in everything from pop-up opera to a visual celebration of Union Street, open-top bus tours and much more in between.
Next month’s Great Aberdeen Run is now looming large on the calendar, taking place on 27 August. With more than 6,000 people already signed up between the 10k, half-marathon and family run it promises to be a wonderful spectacle. It is part of the wider City Centre Masterplan and since the launch, when Hannah Miley (pictured) joined us as the star attraction, it has captured the imagination.
There has been a fantastic response to the inaugural Great Aberdeen Run and once again demonstrates that the public of Aberdeen will turn out in their numbers to support new and exciting events – not to mention the many visitors from at home and abroad who are enjoying a rapidly expanding programme. Further details on places for the Great Aberdeen Run can be found here: https://goo.gl/oRKUZ6 .
The Tour Series cycling in May was another example of that appetite for something fresh and new, with wonderful support for the elite athletes and enthusiastic participation in those events open to the many talented amateur cyclists we have in the region.
Figures published last month demonstrated SPECTRA, which brought the city centre to life in February, had a £700,000 impact on the economy – providing a boost to local businesses at the same time as entertaining tens of thousands of people.
This is just a very small snapshot of the work being done to build Aberdeen’s role as a cultural hub, for the benefit of the residents who attend these events in vast numbers as well as for the visitors who are drawn to the area by the attractions they find – not to mention the businesses, particularly in tourism and hospitality, who are supported by growing visitors numbers.
Whilst the events are engaging and fun, there is a serious strategic approach underpinning Aberdeen City Council’s focus on developing the programme. Our economic strategy has at its heart an emphasis on diversification in the regional economy and equally on internationalisation. All of the events mentioned above are supporting those aims and will have long term benefits for all of us who live and work in the area.
Turning back to the short term, I pass on my thanks to all of those involved in delivering Silver City Stories and my best wishes to all who are in the final weeks of training for the Great Aberdeen Run.