What is Original Edinburgh?
Original Edinburgh is a collaborative business improvement project which empowers business to take a leading role in the success of Edinburgh’s iconic Old Town. We work together to deliver a varied package of investment to create a unique cultural, retail and hospitality experience, which optimises the use of our public space, for workers, the local community and visitors.
Bringing together the very best of Edinburgh’s rich history and heritage with its creativity and longevity, the Old Town is the heart of Scotland's capital city and a bridge between its enlightened past and dynamic future.
The home of the Scottish enlightenment, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Old Town has a compelling cultural offering, attracting four million visitors each year. As well as providing a home for Scotland’s top tourist attractions, the Old Town features many museums, libraries and other cultural centres.
A mixture of niche and specialist products, featuring the very best of Scotland has to offer, makes the Old Town a unrivalled retail experience and a thriving place for people to live, work, visit and do business.
Our vibrant night time economy, characterised by a blend of traditional and contemporary music, food and drink, is testament to Scotland’s global reputation and our wide variety of hospitality offers makes the Old Town a warm welcome for visitors and homely surroundings for residents.
Original Edinburgh’s purpose is to: deliver a common vision that will promote and market the Old Town as a premium cultural, retail and hospitality experience; enhance and maintain our public space for workers, residents and visitors; and, provide a single voice to represent and advocate the interests of our local businesses.
An improvement district is an innovative business partnership model which allows businesses to pool their resources and collectively invest in improvements to the local economy. The return on this investment, beyond what can be provided by government or local authorities, is realised through better business outcomes.
In 2018, we engaged with over 200 Old Town businesses through a survey, and visited over 400, to discuss gather their views on the vision and programme of work for the Old Town BID. In addition, we have worked with numerous other business associations, residents groups and community council, noting their crucial role in the overall fabric of the Old Town.
Create a strong single voice to lobby the City of Edinburgh Council
Provide informative communication on all business-related matters
Improve the quality of experience of the public realm for workers, residents and visitors, as befitting a UNESCO World Heritage status
Promote the Old Town as a place to work, live, visit, study and invest
Create a strong and aspirational identity, sense of ‘place’ and global appeal
Original Edinburgh Steering Group
James McGregor, The Royal McGregor – Chairman
Andrew McRae, Museum Context – Vice Chairman
Fawns Reid, Fabhatrix – Treasurer
Kat Brogan, Mercat Tours
Manuela Calchini, Visit Scotland
Lezley Marion Cameron, Councillor
Kate Campbell, Councillor
Martin Clarke, Edinburgh Woollen Mill
Aga Firat, Cockburn Café
Rachel Gregson, Bruce Group Scotland
Fiona Rankin, Edinburgh World Heritage
Jocelyne Fleming – Project Manager
Recent Meeting Minutes