Glasgow kisses all round as the Gorbals celebrates the power of love

17 Jan 02
Glasgow council is puncturing the remnants of the city's lingering tough reputation by holding a festival celebrating its little known links to the patron saint of love.

18 January 2002

The city council hopes that by turning Glasgow into the 'City of Love' from February 8 to 17, tourists will be seduced at a time when they are normally thin on the ground.

The festival capitalises on the fact that remains of Saint Valentine are displayed at the Blessed John Duns Scotus church in the Gorbals area of the city. Churches in Dublin and the Italian town of Terni also hold relics of the saint, who was martyred in 296AD.

The council decided to run the £50,000 extravaganza in conjunction with the Greater Glasgow and Clyde Valley Tourist Board and the chamber of commerce after a £5,000 feasibility study. Council leader Charles Gordon said: 'It may seem strange to outsiders that a city with an alleged reputation like Glasgow's would be hosting a celebration of love. But as someone who is an old-fashioned romantic at heart, I am quite tickled by the idea.'

In addition to councillor-tickling, the festival promises 'the largest art show in the world' consisting of pieces on the theme of love displayed in shop windows. Other events include a St Valentine's Ball and classical music concerts.


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