Local music stars and other city ambassadors have welcomed the news a major BBC music festival is returning to Dundee.
As reported in the Tele yesterday, BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend returns to Camperdown Park on May 22-24 after 14 years – the first time it has returned to a city in its current form.
Biffy Clyro, Calvin Harris and Harry Styles are among the first acts to be announced.
Dundee City Council leader John Alexander has expressed his excitement over the event.
He said: “I met with BBC representatives on the August 7 2019, at which point Dundee was one of a few potential host locations, to discuss our involvement. So as you can imagine, it’s been a nightmare keeping tight lipped.
“They already knew that Camperdown Park was a superb venue for this event from their experience in 2006. I was clear with them and with council officials, under no circumstances could we allow this event to go to any other destination.
“In what has been a very quick few months, council teams have worked alongside the BBC to ensure that all of the planning and organisation is in place. An event of this scale is a huge logistical challenge but it’s also hugely worthwhile.”
Simple Minds bassist Ged Grimes has called the announcement “fantastic news”, adding: “The people of Dundee have been always been proud to welcome visitors to our vibrant city but this is also a great opportunity for Dundonians to experience the biggest music artists right on our own doorstep.”
TV presenter Lorraine Kelly quipped: “This was such a huge success last time so no wonder they want to come back to a wonderful, enthusiastic audience and a friendly welcome.”
Tom Simpson, the Dundonian musician best known as a member of Snow Patrol, played the festival in 2006 as part of the headlining band.
“Let’s hope the sun shines on Dundee and Big Weekend is as huge a success in 2020 as it was in 2006,” he said.
Mike Stirling, head of Beano Studios Scotland, has his own ideas for the festival line-up.
He said: “Dennis is waiting on the call from Radio 1 to join some of them on the main stage at Big Weekend to form the ultimate supergroup – Dennis and the Dundonian Dinmakers – with Gnasher on maracas, of course.”
Dundee was revealed as the location for 2020’s Big Weekend live on Radio 1 yesterday morning, following weeks of intense speculation.
Music fans across the country have been chomping at the bit as they look to get tickets for the big event.
Meanwhile, the newly qualified teacher given the honour of revealing the Big Weekend location on the radio yesterday has described the “surreal” moment.
Carys Boyle, 22, had sealed envelopes bearing the details of the first announcements posted through the door of her Monifieth home just minutes before she was called up by breakfast host Greg James to read them out live on air to millions of listeners.
— BBC Radio 1 (@BBCR1) January 27, 2020
She had emailed Greg several months beforehand, signing it off as ‘Carys from Dundee’ – the reason she believes she got the call.
She said: “Last Wednesday I got an email from someone at the BBC. I thought it was weird – they must have searched Dundee in their inbox.
“Getting to read the names was amazing, really surreal. I didn’t know it was in Dundee officially until that morning. Getting read the names was amazing.
“Why did they come back to Dundee? I don’t know if it’s maybe to do with the fact Dundee’s back on the map.”