HIBS fans have been warned to be prepared for “travel disruption” as supporters stage a mass exodus from the city on cup final day.
Road closures in the city centre and east of the city as a result of the Edinburgh Marathon has led council officials to encourage Hibees to leave for Glasgow by way of Ferry Road and other peripheral routes.
Fleets of coaches are set to depart Easter Road and the surrounding area from 10am onwards on Sunday, May 26 – but with Lochend Road, London Road and Regent Road all closed to traffic official advice has been to avoid the city centre.
Organisers of the marathon have confirmed that while Lochend Road will be closed to traffic, supporters will be able to cross the road by foot to get to bus pick-up points near the stadium and along Easter Road.
The marathon will get underway on London Road at 9.50am and Regent Road at 10am at exactly the same time that most supporter’s buses will be departing the city.
Mike Riley, chair of Hibs Supporters Club, whose members will be leaving Sunnyside at 10.30am on board seven 70-seater coaches, said: “We looked at the route and knew there was no point in trying to get across town.
“We’ll be heading down Ferry Road and missing everything. A lot of other fans have moved their pick up points away from the city centre to avoid any disruption.”
Councillor Lesley Hinds, the city’s transport convener, said: “As always when big events are hosted in the city there can be some temporary travel disruption. We’d advise people to plan ahead and leave plenty of time if they’re travelling through the city centre on Sunday.
“We recommend that any fans driving to Glasgow exit the city via Ferry Road and we’re working closely with Hibernian FC to minimise disruption for local residents.”
Edinburgh Marathon Festival director Neil Kilgour said he is working with police and the city council to minimise disruption for departing fans.
He added: “The area will be very busy and we would encourage fans to allow extra time to make sure that they are able to get to the departure points for their bus on time.
Superintendent David Carradice said cup final arrangements and security for the marathon – in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing are being organised in tandem.
He said: “Planning for the cup final and the marathon are being dealt with together rather than in isolation. There will be coordination to make sure both events run smoothly.
“We will ensure that security is proportionate.”