NEARLY £400,000 was spent policing last month’s Scottish Cup final between Hearts and Hibs, with more than 1600 officers deployed over two days, new figures revealed today.
The largest bill was run up by Strathclyde Police, who deployed 1010 officers on match day to deal with supporters, including at Hampden Stadium where the teams clashed.
Meanwhile, Lothian and Borders Police spent £47,240 on Saturday, May 19 on planning costs and overtime, with 236 officers involved in the operation.
On the day of Hearts’ victory parade through the streets of Gorgie, a further 289 officers were in attendance with the costs hitting £36,259. Officers from British Transport Police had 92 officers on duty, and ran up £14,457 on the day of the game as thousands of fans swarmed through to Glasgow. Ten officers were also deployed on the Sunday, costing another £886.
The cost of the policing operation will be met by the SFA as hosts of the match, which Hearts won 5-1.
Police chiefs today said that planning for the event had been “extensive”, but they were left “delighted” with the conduct of both sets of fans. Despite the huge numbers of fans involved in the weekend’s events, arrests were kept to a minimum.
On Saturday, police arrested just 22 people in and around Hampden – ranging from breach of the peace and drunken behaviour to sectarian and racial disorder – while in Edinburgh just eight arrests were made for assault and breach of the peace as celebrations raged long into the night.
A Lothian and Borders Police spokesman said: “The Scottish Cup final was a historic event for Edinburgh, and a major operation for all the police forces involved. Lothian and Borders Police worked closely with both clubs and partner agencies to plan for the event, and the policing operation on match day and the day of the victory parade was extensive.
“Only a small number of arrests were made over the cup final weekend, and we were delighted with the conduct of the vast majority of fans, whose behaviour was exemplary.”
The force added that officers’ rest days had been cancelled in a bid to reduce overtime costs.
Strict security measures were in place at Hampden, including sniffer dogs trained to detect smoke bombs and flares.
A Strathclyde Police spokeswoman said: “Strathclyde Police is extremely experienced in policing large-scale events and this year’s cup final was no exception – it was a memorable day.”
Strathclyde Police £298,471
Number of officers 1010
Lothian & Borders Police £83,500
Number of officers 525
British Transport Police £15,342
Number of officers 102