A HIBS fan has announced plans to walk to Hampden ahead of the Scottish Cup final in an effort to raise money for his recently-deceased best friend.
David Fulton, 53, decided on his 45-mile pilgrimage after his best pal and dad-of-three, Charlie Adams, 45, died of a heart attack two weeks ago.
The motor mechanic, from Niddrie, hopes to complete the trek within ten hours and all money raised will be given to Charlie’s widow, Anne Marie, to help with his funeral costs. David, a lifelong fan who will be attending Sunday’s showpiece, said: “He was my best mate and a good friend. His death came as a great shock and it was after his funeral that some of our mates were talking about the cost and how he had no life insurance.
“I just decided that I wanted to do something to help out his family. I’ve never done anything like this before and I doubt I’ll do it again.”
Father-of-three David will set off from Calder Road at 8am the day before the final and he hopes to reach the steps of Hampden Park by 6pm that evening. His route, one mile for every year of Charlie’s life, will take him along trunk roads from Calder to Whitburn to Polkemmet and Cambuslang before reaching his destination.
Along the way he will be kept entertained by a specially-selected Hibs cup final playlist featuring The Proclaimers, Elvis Presley, Rod Stewart and several Hibs club songs. David added: “I was friends with Charlie for over 20 years and loved his company, he was a great guy. We used to have great banter about the football, especially in recent weeks, as he was a Celtic fan.
“I told his wife Anne Marie though, ‘I’ll walk to Hampden for him but there’s no way I’m giving him the Scottish Cup’.”
David’s fundraising effort received the backing of Hibs striker Leigh Griffiths at Easter Road yesterday and he is now in the process of setting up a JustGiving page to collect donations for the cause.
Donations can also be handed in the to the pals’ favourite haunt, The Braidburn Inn on Mayfield Road.
A Hibs spokesman said: “It is an inspirational effort from one of our supporters for an extremely worthy cause and we would like to wish him every success with his sponsored walk to Hampden.”
Since the club’s 1902 triumph, Hibs have finished runners-up in the Scottish Cup nine times – although the omens are good for the team from Leith as the last time Hibs won the cup it was against Celtic. And the following season, Hibs won the Scottish league championship for the first time.
CALL FOR CAUTION AS CAPITAL GOES SPORT-CRAZY
MORE than 20,000 Hibs fans are expected to head to Hampden for the kick-off at 3pm on Sunday while the Capital plays host to thousands of runners in the annual Edinburgh Marathon.
Superintendent David Carradice, of Police Scotland Edinburgh Division, issued the following advice to supporters: “While we want everyone to enjoy this festival of sport, keeping people safe is the priority for Police Scotland. There will be a high-visibility police presence on patrol over the weekend.
“I would remind people that it is not permissible to drink alcohol on supporters’ buses, trains or any form of public transport. It is also an offence in Glasgow to drink alcohol in streets and public places and anyone arriving at the turnstiles drunk will not be allowed entry into the stadium.”