Revellers have been encouraged to plan ahead for their Hogmanay celebrations in Aberdeenshire as part of Police Scotland’s Operation Sandside in the North East.
Locally it is anticipated that in the region of 12,000 people will turn out for the events in Stonehaven for Open Air in the Square and the traditional Fireballs.
Local Area Commander for Aberdeenshire South Chief Inspector Richard Craig said: “The festive season is a fantastic period of the year and Hogmanay is a traditional time of celebration. We want to encourage people to enjoy themselves, have fun with their friends and family members but to be safe and responsible.
“Following a few simple tips can help to make the most of your evening out; arrive in plenty of time, plan your journey to and from the event and make sure you are dressed for the weather conditions.
“Being aware of your alcohol consumption, staying together with friends and looking after your valuables can help keep you safe at the busiest time of the year.
“As part of Operation Sandside, additional Police Officers will be on duty in Stonehaven and across Aberdeenshire during the celebrations. We want to ensure that the very small minority do not have the opportunity to disrupt it for the vast majority who wish to go out and enjoy the festive experience in the other North East towns and villages.”
Douglas Milne, Aberdeenshire Community Safety Partnership, said: “The Hogmanay celebrations in Stonehaven and across Aberdeenshire have a long history of success and we anticipate that this year’s events will be a safe family occasion. We would ask that revellers listen to the advice of the Police and follow the tips to keep safe.”
Willie Knox, Open Air in the Square Event Organiser, said: “Hogmanay is a great celebration and we would encourage everyone to enjoy what is on offer. Please plan ahead, arrive early, stick with your friends, know how you are getting home, have a fantastic time and most importantly get home safely.”