The Portobello Eye – the Ferris wheel which has been set up on Portobello Promenade – has come under fire from Labour’s Local Government spokesperson Sarah Boyack.

A lack of consultation with local residents, social distancing concerns and disruption to daily life has raised questions over the decison making of the City of Edinburgh Council in allowing the Big Wheel to be installed.

The Lothian MSP also drew parallels with Aberdeen which has gone in to a partial lockdown followoing a spike in Covid-19 infections and she said Edinburgh had to guard against a similar situation.

MSP Sarah Boyack – Edinburgh has to guard against an Aberdeen style lockdown. PHOTO © Jon Davey

“There are big concerns about this Ferris wheel operating in Portobello, not least issues surrounding the approval process and disruption to the local community. I have been contacted by constituents and local residents who have expressed worries about health and safety, unacceptable noise and lack of consultation,” said Ms Boyack.

“Residents were not considered on this matter and would have been unlikely to approve of a structure that enables people to look directly into their homes, invading their privacy.

“It is unacceptable that locals, including key shift workers, should have their lives disrupted by noise including those working from home who will have to endure loud music all day, or those who have children going to sleep in the evenings.

The Ferris wheel on Portobello Promenade has caused an outcry

“We are in a pandemic, and this attraction is also likely to have an impact on social distancing in an area where the police have been forced to intervene to enforce it in recent weeks.

“Areas of Aberdeen are going into lockdown once more and we have no wish to see a similar situation in Edinburgh.

“It is imperative the local councillors are involved in the approval process for proposals with such a big impact on people’s lives. We need transparent and accountable decision-making, especially when it involves impacting so many people and businesses locally. The risks are simply too high at this crucial stage.”