Homeless moved from emergency hotel accommodation amid Taylor Swift tourism spike

Shelter Scotland said it was 'shameful' that such a major event would cause an effect on people experiencing homelessness.

Edinburgh Council moves homeless from emergency accommodation amid Taylor Swift tourism spike iStock

A number of homeless households are to be moved from their accommodation to make way for tourists travelling to Edinburgh to see Taylor Swift.

The council said they working to find “alternative accommodation” for those affected, adding that the summer months could put further strain on their emergency housing supplies.

The local authority said it was a “symptom of the city’s housing emergency” that tourist accommodation must be used to house people experiencing homelessness.

Swift will be playing three shows at Murrayfield next month with tens of thousands of people expected to descend on the city.

Housing, homelessness and fair work convener, councillor Jane Meagher, said: “It is a symptom of the housing emergency we face in Edinburgh that at times we must use tourist accommodation to house homeless households.

“We know it won’t be available year-round, particularly over the busy summer months, so we use it reluctantly as a last resort.

“We’re aware of the situation and are working with the affected households to find appropriate, alternative accommodation.”

Third Force News reported it had been made aware of “multiple homeless individuals” in the city who had been removed from the hotel-style accommodation they had previously been staying in.

Charity Shelter Scotland said it was “shameful” that such a major event would have an effect on people experiencing homelessness.

Alison Watson, shelter director, added: “The housing system in Scotland’s capital is broken and completely unable to cope with demand; it is obviously shameful that a major event in the ‘festival city’ should have such a significant knock-on effect for people experiencing homelessness.

“Record numbers are stuck in temporary accommodation in Edinburgh and nearly 3,000 children have nowhere to call home; this is the reality of the housing emergency in Scotland’s capital.

“Decades of underinvestment in social housing is the root cause of Edinburgh’s housing emergency, and it’s been compounded by more than a decade of austerity.

“This can’t continue; the city needs to see urgent action from every level of government.”

Analysis of the online rates at AirBnB, Booking.com and Expedia by marketing firm Searchbloom found Edinburgh’s most expensive hotel stay was the night of the Swift’s opening show averaging at around £686.67.

However, according to the Barclays Swiftonomics report, the Eras tour is expected to provide a £997m boost to the UK economy.

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