Skip to main content
Visit Scotland | Alba

Scotland, the perfect stage for events

In 2003, EventScotland invested in its first major event – the MTV Music Awards. This event was held in Leith, Edinburgh and was watched by 27 million people worldwide. 

Since then, Scotland has continued to build on its reputation as a world-leading events destination.

Looking to the future, we'll continue to work with partners. We want to maintain Scotland's legacy and position as a world-leading events destination.

The benefits of hosting major events

£63.5 million

invested in key event programmes


of local authorities hosting supported events

£1.6 billion

net economic impact from outside Scotland

Source: EventScotland (2003 to 2023)

Ongoing - Edinburgh Festivals

Edinburgh Festival City have published their 2030 vision for a resilient and ambitious festival city. This document demonstrates the significant benefits that these international festivals generate. It also highlights their importance to Scotland’s culture, economy, and place in the world.

Read the 2023 vision on

2023 - UCI Cycling World Championships

From 3 to 13 August 2023, the inaugural UCI Cycling World Championships was hosted in Glasgow and across Scotland. This was the single biggest cycling event in history. It brought together 13 existing UCI World Championships into one mega event for the first time ever.

Partners were encouraged to help promote both the event as well as celebrate the #PowerOfTheBike. We helped to make the following assets and ready-to-use content available for them to do so.

Squiggly Bike logo

Published August 2022

The Squiggly Bike logo in various formats. Using the logo was a great way for businesses and organisations to enable and encourage more people to ride more bikes.

Squiggly Bike logo - brand guidelines

Published September 2022

The logo was made available to use for free across promotions, communications and assets.

Communications style guide

Published August 2022

This guide was created to keep a clear and consistent message across channels, no matter the audience.

2022 - The 150th Open

Golf events continue to add significant value to the Scottish economy along with wider benefits. The 150th Open was one of five major tournaments hosted across summer 2022, further reinforcing Scotland’s reputation as the Home of Golf.

Read our news item about the economic impact of The 150th Open.

What did The 150th Open deliver?

£300 million

economic benefit generated

290,000 spectators

resulting in a record breaking attendance

Source: Independent study commissioned by The R&A, VisitScotland and Fife Council

2021 - COP26

In November 2021 Scotland welcomed the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) to Glasgow. It was the largest business event ever hosted in the UK.

The climate talks brought together heads of state, climate experts and campaigners. In Glasgow, these groups agreed to co-ordinate action to tackle climate change under the Paris Agreement. There were close to 40,000 attendees.

The conference was carbon neutral (carried out in line with the Greenhouse Gas Protocol). This was measured using the PAS2060 international standard on carbon neutrality.

The conference not only further showcased Scotland as the perfect host. It also demonstrated how business events can bring significant social and economic change.

What did COP26 deliver?

22,000 delegates

in attendance at the event

14,000 observers

in attendance at the event

3,800 media reps

in attendance at the event

Source: United Nations

2019 - The Solheim Cup

The Solheim Cup at Gleneagles was a legacy benefit from 2014. EventScotland submitted the successful bid for this event. This was backed and underwritten by the Scottish Government.

The event became the highest attended women’s golf tournament ever held in the UK with record crowds of more than 90,000. The 2019 Solheim Cup was hailed as the best-ever hosting of the event.

It also set a benchmark for staging family-friendly and accessible golf events through its partnership with Euan’s Guide.

A sustainability action plan for the event was developed with the GEO Foundation. This was in order to minimise the environmental footprint of the cup and to conserve biodiversity.

The Solheim Cup fulfilled its pre-event promise of equality, experience and innovation. It achieved this through everything from transport planning to on-course infrastructure and more.

What did The 2019 Solheim Cup deliver?

10.4 million

global audience

£8.82 million

in net economic impact

£7.83 million

gross value added

257 jobs

full time equivalent jobs

Source: VisitScotland Annual Report 2020

2018 - European Championships

Glasgow and Scotland broke new ground with the inaugural 2018 European Championships. This multi-sport event saw different events take place in both Berlin and across Scotland, chiefly in Glasgow.

This innovative approach to developing new models for event delivery has a bright future. Scotland hosting the 2023 UCI World Cycling Championships is one example of that future.

More information on the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships. 

What did The 2018 European Championships deliver?

565,000 spectators

in attendance at Glasgow 2018

1.4 billion

TV audience across Glasgow and Berlin

£256 million

PR value for Glasgow and Scotland

Source: Square Space

2014 - Commonwealth Games, Ryder Cup, and more

Glasgow welcomed the world to the Commonwealth Games and the Ryder Cup brought more than 250,000 visitors from 96 countries to our shores in 2014. That year, we also celebrated the Year of Homecoming with events taking place across Scotland.

The Commonwealth Games was a catalyst for securing major events for Scotland, both in the lead up to and in the following years. This was key in boosting the local and national economy. It also cemented Scotland's global profile as a world-class destination for events, tourism, and business.

Brand new state-of-the-art venues, such as the Emirates Arena and the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome were built. These venues have since hosted the likes of the

  • 2018 European Championships
  • 2019 European Athletics Indoor Championships
  • 2022 Davis Cup
  • 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships

2008 - National Events Strategy

In 2008, the game changing National Events Strategy, Scotland The Perfect Stage, was launched. This has been critical to Scotland's success.

Its dynamic Team Scotland approach has ensured that we have continued to develop as an events host year-on-year. This generates economic, cultural and social benefits for Scotland.

In 2023, a public consultation invited anyone with a connection to the events industry to provide feedback on a range of areas, including:

  • priorities for the events sector in Scotland

  • event accessibility

  • working in events

  • collaboration on and innovation of events

  • how events can further promote cities, regions, and Scotland as a whole

An update on the National Events Strategy is expected in 2035.

Read our page on the National Events Strategy.

Related links