FIREWORKS and thousands of torches will light up the Forth Road Bridge to mark the structure's 50th anniversary next month.

Exactly 2,014 torch bearers will form a half-mile "river of fire" along the bridge to Fife before returning to South Queensferry for a party with live music from Big Country and Bwani Junction.

The highlight of the Bridge Party, which marks the end of the Forth Bridges Festival, will be the fireworks finale. The display will be set to music and end with an outdoor ceilidh.

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Lesley Hinds, convener of the Forth Estuary Transport Authority, said: "The Forth Road Bridge was a huge engineering achievement for Scotland when it opened in 1964, and in the 50 years since it has provided fantastic service, carrying over twice the weight and volume of traffic envisaged by the engineers who designed it. The bridge has transformed the economy of the east of Scotland and the lives of millions who now take crossing the Forth for granted. With the new Queensferry Crossing set to open in 2016, this is a pivotal moment in the bridge's history."

Only over-16s can join the torchlight procession, which will shut the bridge for half an hour at 10pm on September 13. Tickets for the event, costing £23, go on sale tomorrow.