A march in support of Scottish independence has seen tens of thousands of people take to the streets of Edinburgh.

Organisers said more than 100,000 people attended, making the event the “biggest ever” in support of the cause.

Police Scotland said the local authority estimates 20,000 people took part.

Yes flagsYes flags blow in the wind as the campaigners march down the Royal Mile (Jane Barlow/PA)

The All Under One Banner event began near Edinburgh Castle at 1pm on Saturday before making its way down the Royal Mile towards Holyrood Park.

Gary Kelly, of the campaign group, said: “It’s amazing, the fight for independence is well and truly alive.

Glasgow was the biggest, now Edinburgh’s beaten it – we’ll need to beat it again in Glasgow.

“The fact it was in the capital is brilliant.”

Linda Hamilton, from Glasgow, was one of those who took part.

She said: “I believe in Scottish independence and I believe today is a demonstration – a visual demonstration – that there is a need for independence in our country.”

Pro-indy rallyThe march ended at Holyrood Park, where a rally took place featuring speeches and live bands (Jane Barlow/PA)

Bob McKendrie, 67, originally from Dumfries but now living near Hull, said: “Westminster should listen to us, we’ve been ignored for too long – we want our independence.”

A small number of union-supporting counter-protesters were on the Royal Mile as the pro-independence crowds walked past.

They shouted they are proud to be “Scottish and British”.

Independence supporter Iona Young, 20, from Dunfermline, claimed the contrast in numbers for each side showed their togetherness.

She added: “It just proves that we all agree on the same thing. There were a few unionists back at the top there, but there’s only about 20 of them compared to how many we’ve got here.”

Scotland in Union chief executive Pamela Nash said: “Poll after poll shows that a majority of Scots don’t want a divisive and unnecessary second independence referendum.

“Those marching in Edinburgh are not representative of Scotland, and they are talking to nobody but themselves. The organisers should also be ashamed of the way they have attacked Historic Environment Scotland staff for doing their job.

Unionist counter-protestersSupporters of the union said they are proudly Scottish and British (Jane Barlow/PA)

“Rather than listen to these protesters, most voters want the SNP to listen to concerns about the NHS, schools and the economy – and they want Nicola Sturgeon to get back to the day job.”

Bands, bikers, people in fancy dress and countless Saltire flags were all part of the march towards Holyrood.

Those who gathered in the park listened to speeches and live music performances.

Others scaled Arthur’s Seat to get a better view of the event.

Pro-indy rallyThe march began near Edinburgh Castle (PA)

It comes despite Historic Environment Scotland – which looks after the green space – saying the rally had not been given permission to take place.

A spokesman for the Scottish Government body said: “Our position on use of the park for any rally after the march remains the same. It has not been overruled by Police Scotland.

“To confirm, we have not given permission for the set-up of stalls, staging, branding and other static presence within Holyrood Park.”

Inspector Murray Starkey said: “Police Scotland worked alongside event organisers and partners for a planned march in the capital.

Pro-indy rallyA young independence supporter had the Scottish flag painted on his face for the event (Jane Barlow/PA)

“City of Edinburgh Council estimate that 20,000 people took part in the march from Johnston Terrace to Holyrood Park.

“Disruption to the city centre was as expected and all roads reopened as planned.

“Queen’s Drive was temporarily closed to ensure public safety.

“One arrest was made in connection with a minor offence.

“Both the participants and the wider public are thanked for their patience and co-operation during the event.”