Published on Monday, November 26, 2018

Edinburgh to clamp down on 'silent disco tourism'

Silent discos, which are becoming increasingly popular among tourists in Edinburgh, face a crackdown after locals complained they are too noisy.

The 'discos' involve participants dancing to music while wearing headphones as they follow a guided walking tour of the city.

As the tours have become more popular, there have been complaints about noise as well as overcrowding on pavements and concerns that, as the headphones drown out traffic noise, there is a risk of people walking into traffic.

Conservative councillor Jo Mowatt told the Edinburgh Evening News: "Silent discos are not silent. There is a lot of whooping and screaming, especially when you have 40 women on a hen party.

""There is also the safety aspect as who is going to have to step in the road due to the groups taking up the pavements?"

She added: "I have been contacted by many of my constituents regarding silent discos, while the Old Town Community Council has been raising this issue for around nine months."

The city council was due to discuss the issue at a meeting on Monday evening.

"A report detailing the powers available to the Council to regulate silent discos and similar activity will be discussed at this evening's South East Locality Committee, though there are currently no plans to ban such walking tours," a spokesman told Sky News.

Sky added Edinburgh Council says regulating the companies appears to be tricky.

The firms can avoid getting a licence if they don't take payment on the streets and existing laws are not modern enough to stop people dancing in the streets.

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