Today’s announcement that the BBC Sports Personality of the Year ceremony will be staged at P&J Live later this year is fantastic for the city and there’s already a great buzz about the event’s arrival in Aberdeen.
The awards are part of the fabric of life for British sports fans and the appeal stretches far beyond our own shores, with a truly global audience and stature.
As a city we’ve got a rich and vibrant sporting heritage – not to mention a very bright future – and with the focus of the nation on Aberdeen in December there will be a wonderful opportunity to celebrate that.
Ian Black, known to generations of Aberdonians for his service to Robert Gordon’s College and swimming in the city, was a winner of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award in 1958 and we have been fortunate to have had many other great characters representing the city in everything from rugby and football to golf and athletics as well as much more in between.
Embracing sport and the benefits of an active lifestyle are key to the Council’s ambitions for a city where every individual has the opportunity to fulfil their potential.
We work closely with a number of organisations to promote a mix of elite provision through to community projects.
Our collaboration with AFC Community Trust on a range of initiatives is a source of pride, particularly the successful Food and Fun project which is providing free food and activities to children in key areas during school holidays. The Council’s partnership with the Denis Law Legacy Trust and Johan Cruyff Foundation has delivered Scotland’s first Cruyff Court, with a second now under construction, and there are many other examples which touch all of our communities and every age group.
The SFA Performance School at Hazlehead and investment in Aberdeen Sports Village and Aquatics Centre are just two examples of the focus on also ensuring the city provides a platform for the stars of the future.
Not only will this year’s BBC Sports Personality of the Year ceremony shine a light on Aberdeen as a sporting hub, it will also showcase the city’s transformation – a great demonstration of the way the change in the built environment is supporting a new cultural outlook and opening doors to new opportunities.
The Event Complex Aberdeen, with P&J Live at its heart, represents Aberdeen City Council’s largest single investment as part of a £1billion capital programme. In creating a world class facility, the largest of its type in Europe, we have equipped the city with the capability to attract events of a scale and stature never seen before.
We look forward to many more exciting announcements to follow, but for now are delighted to welcome BBC Sports Personality of the Year to the city.
Cllr Jenny Laing and Cllr Douglas Lumsden