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Thousands will cheer Team Scotland on victory parade

THOUSANDS of people will welcome Scotland's Commonwealth Games athletes as they make a triumphant parade through Glasgow tomorrow.

BIG MOMENT: Team Scotland received an ecstatic welcome at the opening ceremony of the Games, and the athletes will thank fans for their support at today's parade. Picture; Colin Mearns
BIG MOMENT: Team Scotland received an ecstatic welcome at the opening ceremony of the Games, and the athletes will thank fans for their support at today's parade. Picture; Colin Mearns

Team Scotland will travel from the west end to the city centre in a seven-strong fleet of vehicles before being presented to an ­audience of around 5,000 people gathered in the city centre.

Members of the public have been invited to line the route and cheer on those who flew the flag for Scotland during the Games, which have been hailed as "the best ever".

The route will start at ­Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum at 4.15pm before the fleet makes its way through the city to the finish at George Square.

Among those who will be ­parading through the city will be Scotland's team of swimmers, including gold medallists Danny Wallace, Hannah Miley and Ross Murdoch, but many track and field athletes will not be present as they are contesting the European Championships in Zurich.

Organisers have warned of road closures, which will come into effect from midnight tonight around the south and north sides of George Square, affecting traffic in the city centre.

The north side of Blythswood Square will also be closed tomorrow from 3.30pm, while Argyle Street will closed from Union Street to George Square from 4pm.

Jon Doig, Team Scotland chef de mission, said: "The athletes' parade is an exciting opportunity for Team Scotland to thank the people of Scotland for their backing throughout the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

"Their support is vital, roaring on our athletes as they proudly compete for Scotland and the parade will be a fitting finale, where everyone can share in the moment and celebrate the achievements of the Games."

Team Scotland recorded its best ever haul of medals at the Commonwealth Games, winning 19 gold, 16 silver and 19 bronze.

Among those who topped the podium were judo sisters Louise and Kimberley Renicks, gymnast Daniel Keatings and para-sport sprinting team Libby Clegg and Mikhail Huggins.

Forecasters say the parade is likely to stay rain-free, with dry weather and even sunny spells expected during the day.

A spokesman for the Met Office said: "It's looking like a good day and will stay dry and generally warm with little risk of rain."

Speaking at the announcement of the parade, Sport Secretary Shona Robison said the atmosphere would be "unbelievable". She added: "This is a fantastic opportunity for the people of ­Scotland to once again show their support and appreciation for all of Team Scotland - not just the athletes but also those who will have contributed to the success."

Councillor Gordon Matheson, leader of Glasgow City Council, said: "Glasgow is known the world over for its love of sport and nowhere will that be more evident than at the Athletes' Parade through our city's streets.

"It will give the people of ­Glasgow one final chance to be part of our Games and to celebrate with the stars of Team Scotland.

"It will be the perfect finale to the best ever Games."

A total of 1,500 tickets for the George Square event have been made available to members of the public through competitions while an allocation of 2,500 briefs is being provided to Games volunteers, with the athletes' family and friends completing the audience.

l Family passes that were ­available through a competition run in The Herald have been awarded.

The winners are: Andrew Baird, Bill Nelson, Liz Divers, Iris Moffatt, Ann Smith, Lesley Macdonald, Kathryn Glasper, Callum MacCallum, Vincent Quinn, Gwen McKinlay, Alison McAulay, Janette Scott, Michael McClumpha, Fiona McMartin, Mike Oliver, Graham McAulay, L Mairs, Anne Dowie and Winnie Gallacher.

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