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Last Updated: Wednesday, 29 December, 2004, 06:44 GMT
Hogmanay weather czar for capital
Edinburgh on Hogmanay
Thousands of people were told to leave the city centre last year
A weather czar has been appointed by Edinburgh City Council in a bid to avoid a repeat of last year's Hogmanay party washout.

A forecaster will give officials early updates to help change plans if another storm breaks over the celebrations.

Expert, Peter Sloss, said: "It gives a few days notice on how the weather should evolve through the period."

Organisers in 2003 did not order a forecast before the event, which was cancelled at the last minute.

A specific forecast for the city could have been obtained from the Met Office for 17.

Despite warnings of bad weather on Hogmanay, organisers took their forecast from Edinburgh Airport.

Tens of thousands of people who hoped to see in the New Year outdoors were forced to go home when bad weather ruined the evening.

We can look at what could be the potential weather problems and focus on those
Peter Sloss
Weather czar

The city's Hogmanay celebrations have a reputation of being among the best in the world and are worth 30m to the capital's economy.

Mr Sloss said: "Should the weather start to change, then we can bring the updates to the council as quickly as possible."

He added: "As we get nearer the Hogmanay celebrations, we can be more specific as to what's going to happen.

"Once we get closer, maybe a couple of days out, we can look at what could be the potential weather problems and focus on those as far as the event's concerned."

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