Tram trip and parade for Commonwealth Games baton

Diving hero Tom Daley carries the baton on a previous leg of the relay. Picture: Ben Birchall/Glasgow 2014 Ltd via Getty Images)
Diving hero Tom Daley carries the baton on a previous leg of the relay. Picture: Ben Birchall/Glasgow 2014 Ltd via Getty Images)
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THE Queen’s Baton is to be paraded through Princes Street, ride on a tram and visit Holyrood Palace as the Capital becomes the first place in Scotland to welcome the relay.

Cheering crowds are expected to line the streets on Saturday, June 14 as the countdown to the Commonwealth Games begins.

The Edinburgh leg will mark the start of its 40-day tour of Scotland ahead of the opening ceremony in Glasgow on July 23.

The baton will be carried through the Capital by more than 100 people nominated for their contributions to sport, community and youth projects.

Baton bearer Kerry Renwick, 16, of Wester Hailes Education Centre, was nominated to represent her school because she encourages others to be part of sport.

She said: “I am thrilled to have this amazing opportunity. It is an inspiring challenge I thought I could never get to be part of and now I am experiencing it. It is unbelievable. I have watched the baton travel through other countries and it’s exciting to think that will be me.”

People will be able to get their first glimpse of the baton as it is arrives at Heriot-Watt University at 10am.

The relay will then move to Murrayfield for 10.45am before making its way by tram to Shandwick Place for 11am to begin a city centre journey.

Its arrival at the Castle will be heralded by a 21 gun salute from 12.30pm to mark the Queen’s official birthday celebrations.

The baton will then travel to the Scottish Parliament and Holyrood Palace for 1.30pm, where it will signal the start of the School Run Event, a 2.2km route which allows participants to run alongside their sporting heroes.

The School Run and the Queen’s Baton Relay will then pass through Holyrood Park to Meadowbank Sports Centre and Stadium, the home of Edinburgh’s previous Commonwealth Games, where a ‘Tryathon’ event will allow people to try out sports from the Games.

The relay will then head off at around 3.30pm and pass through Leith, Portobello Promenade and Duddingston before being received at the Commonwealth Pool at 5.45pm for a diving demonstration.

It will then head through Middle Meadow Walk to the Ross Bandstand in Princes Street Gardens, where a celebratory concert will be held from 6pm, with the baton expected to arrive at 7.20pm.

Councillor Steve Cardownie, festivals and events champion at the city council, said: “The Queen’s Baton Relay will be a fantastic opportunity for people to take to the streets to show their support for our baton bearers and celebrate Edinburgh’s part in the Commonwealth Games. It is great that the baton will travel through the Capital and into the many communities that make this city so unique. As home of the 1970 and 1986 Games, and co-host of this year’s diving at the Royal Commonwealth Pool, it is fitting that the Baton will be brought home to Edinburgh.”

On Sunday, June 15, the relay will travel from South Queensferry before continuing through West Lothian, taking in Linlithgow, Bathgate and Livingston.

On Monday, June 16, it will move on to Midlothian, including Penicuik and Dalkeith, and on Tuesday it will come to East Lothian, passing through Musselburgh, Prestonpans and North Berwick.

john.connell@edinburghnews.com