Hogmanay headliners announced in - Inverness Winter Festival programme

Headliners at this year’s Inverness Winter Festival Hogmanay celebrations are The Elephant Sessions, Scooty and The Skyhooks and multi-award winning folk-rock band Skerryvore.

The Highland Council has announced details of its programme for the Inverness Winter Festival which will climax with The Red Hot Highland Fling in Northern Meeting Park Arena on Hogmanay. 

The Hogmanay celebrations will start at 8.30pm when Comedian Craig Hill will take to the stage to introduce the acts.

The Winter Festival will open with the seventh Inverness Street Festival which will take place over 3 days from 13 to 15 October with an exciting programme of top quality acts performing at city centre venues.

The Highland’s biggest fancy dress event of the year, the city’s Ness Islands Halloween Show will be staged on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 October; and once again hundreds of families are expected to dress up their children in order to help the Council scare away the annual invasion of ghosts, beasties and unmentionables which gather on the banks for the River Ness every Halloween.

Created by Council in partnership Eden Court Creative, Arts in Motion and Limelight Event Services; the show stretches for 1300 metres around two islands in the middle of the River Ness; and attracts visitors from all over the north of Scotland. This year’s show has a “Forest of Frights” theme and visitors can expect to find surprises and screams around every darkened corner. Saturday’s show will commence at 6.30pm and Sunday’s Show at 5.30pm.

On Saturday 5 November another large crowd is expected to gather in Bught Park as the City of Inverness Grand Bonfire and Fireworks Display is staged. This year’s show will start at 19:30 with the lighting of the giant bonfire. This will be followed by a spectacular 20 minute musical fireworks display staged by the award winning display team from Fireworx Scotland.  

On Sunday 20 November the Countdown to Christmas gets underway when a Christmas Lights Parade led by Santa Claus arrives to help Provost Helen Carmichael turn on the Christmas Lights at 18:00. Following the Switch On, spectators are invited to join Santa and the Provost for the traditional Children’s Christmas Carol Concert “Ding Dong Merrily Old High” which starts at 18:30.

The popular Winter Wonderland event will take place over the weekend of Friday 16 to Sunday 18 December. Featuring an opportunity to meet Santa and his Reindeer in a beautifully illuminated Whin Park, the Winter Wonderland show is always popular with the younger members of the Inverness Community and is one of the highlights of the Winter Festival for toddlers.

Provost Helen Carmichael said: “Since our Winter Festival was launched at the end of 2008; it has made a significant contribution towards making Inverness a more enjoyable place to live and provided a significant boost to the local economy by attracting visitors from far and wide to our city. It is wonderful to see just how much enjoyment each of our events generates and to see how much they are appreciated by everybody.

“Every time thousands of spectators decide to wrap up warmly, gather together and have a great time; it makes months of effort seem worthwhile. As I am sure everyone appreciates it takes more than a little talent, dedication and imagination to bring outdoor venues like Ness Islands, Whin Park and even the Council HQ Car Park to life on the coldest and darkest of nights.

“From the BID Street Festival to our much loved Hogmanay Show, I hope that everybody will get a great deal of pleasure experiencing what Inverness has to offer as 2016 comes to a memorable close.”


22 Sep 2016