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Last Updated: Friday, 9 November 2007, 17:06 GMT
Fruitmarket starts 2014 party
Stephen Stewart
BBC Scotland news website

Imagine Christmas, Hogmanay and a World Cup final all rolled into one. Even then, you still are not close.

Glasgow fruitmarket
Jubilant crowds celebrated at the Glasgow Fruitmarket

Glasgow's Old Fruitmarket in the Candleriggs area was the epicentre for Commonwealth Games hysteria when the decision was announced.

It was undoubtedly the biggest event that the faded Victorian grandeur of the Fruitmarket had ever seen.

The saltires were out in force as people waited with bated breath before the fateful words "Let's go live to Colombo".

Despite minor teething problems such as the screen going blank minutes before the announcement, it was good news for the Glasgow bid.

Then cue fireworks and a thunderous rendition of 500 Miles by The Proclaimers - it was official, Glasgow was to host the 2014 Games.

This will bring a host of benefits to Glasgow and Scotland, including everything from regeneration, job creation, inward investment and just a huge pride in being Scottish
Nicola Sturgeon
Deputy First Minister

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was among those celebrating on stage at the Fruitmarket.

She said: "To say that I am happy would be the greatest understatement in the world. I am absolutely delighted that bid has been successful.

"We had a great team who put together an excellent bid.

"This will bring a host of benefits to Glasgow and Scotland, including everything from regeneration, job creation, inward investment and just a huge pride in being Scottish.

"This is a fantastic opportunity for Scottish sport."

It was clear from the tremendous atmosphere and the sheer jubilation on people's faces that this was a party which would last well into the night.

In the words of Scotland manager Alex McLeish: "Glasgow is rocking".

Impromptu jig

The festivities bordered on the surreal at times: Nicola Sturgeon even put aside her political differences to do an impromptu jig alongside Tory leader Annabel Goldie to the strains of Chelsea Dagger by the Fratellis.

Commonwealth gold medal winner, Liz McColgan, was also among those cheering on Glasgow's success.

She said: "I just wish I was a 16-year-old again. There are kids out there now who will be watching the news and this successful bid will give them the motivation to make them want to represent Scotland at the 2014 Games.

"This gives kids a fantastic opportunity to perform at the games in front of a home crowd. There are kids in Easterhouse and places like that who will be looking at this event saying 'I want to be there'."

Jubilant crowds
Crowds celebrate Glasgow's successful Commonwealth bid

David Coyne, executive director of Glasgow Works, the organisation formed to tackle worklessness in the city, said the knock-on effects of the games would be massive.

He added: "The games will boost job creation in all sectors.

"In addition, an army of 15,000 volunteers will be needed, and these people will gain the skills that will make them more employable in the aftermath of 2014."

As things began to wind down and the cleaners moved in to clear the debris created by hundreds of cheering Glaswegians, the news of the bid's success was starting to reverberate around the city streets.

Kevin MacDonald, an HGV driver from the north of Glasgow, said: "I saw some of the information about the event in the run-up to the decision.

"I have to agree that it will bring in investment and housing to the east end where it is very badly needed."

It may be a few years away but if the Fruitmarket event is any indication, Scotland and its largest city will need that time to gear up for the games hysteria.

The 2014 Commonwealth Games will undoubtedly herald a citywide festival of sport and if there is one thing that Glasgow knows how to do, its throw a party.



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