Plans are in place for a victory parade if Liverpool Football Club win the UEFA Champions League Final.
If Jurgen Klopp’s team triumph, Liverpool city council will formally invite the club to hold a victory parade in the city which will be held the following day – Sunday, 27 May – a date requested by the club.
The European champions will not be confirmed until the evening of Saturday 26 May, however due to the major logistical challenges needed to arrange a parade of this scale the announcement is being made in advance so residents and businesses in the city can prepare for the potential event.
The potential parade will take place when Liverpool is staging two major events – Three Festivals Tall Ships Regatta and the Bordeaux Wine Festival – which alone are expected to attract tens of thousands of people to the waterfront.
It would start from midday, is expected to last for a couple of hours, and will see the Liverpool FC team parade the Champions League trophy on an open top bus, travelling along Liverpool’s UNESCO World Heritage Waterfront.
The route starts at the Parliament Street/The Strand junction, and will journey along:
• The Strand
• Up Leeds Street
• Along Hunter Street
• Along Islington
• Along Erskine Street
• Along West Derby Road
• The parade will finish near the Liverpool Olympia
The Three Festivals Tall Ships Regatta event will take place later than advertised on Sunday to accommodate the parade if it takes place. The new start time of the maritime celebration will be advertised next week.
Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson said: “Regardless of whether you are a Red, Blue or not a football fan at all, an event like this has a hugely positive impact and will once again shine the international spotlight on the city.
“We are all tremendously proud of LFC’s achievement and you can already feel the buzz around the city ahead of the final.
“The club requested the parade takes place on the Sunday, and even though it’s already a busy day for the city, we want to make sure we are ready to give them the heroes’ welcome they deserve should they win.
“I understand there will be disappointment for those fans who are unable to get back from Kiev in time, but it was a similar situation in 2005 and we have to be guided by the club in terms of the date and time.
“We are working closely with LFC, Merseyside Police and our travel partners to ensure that the event runs smoothly and safely for everyone to enjoy.
“We’re keeping everything crossed for the final and hope the team and the fans do Liverpool proud in Kiev as they have throughout the competition.”
The parade is expected to attract tens of thousands of people, so the city council is issuing key advice for fans:
• Use the full length of the route. The open top bus won’t be stopping so take advantage of the full length of the route from the bottom Parliament Street, all the way to West Derby Road.
• Decide which part of the route you want to wait at and arrive in plenty of time.
• Be patient – it is impossible to predict how long it will take the team bus to travel along the route.
• Due to the number of people coming in to and out of the city, there will be significant demands on public transport, with queuing likely.
Motorists are advised that the city centre is expected to be extremely busy, and with this in mind they should plan their journeys in and out of the city carefully.
Merseyside Police Superintendent Mark Wiggins said: “Should Liverpool win the cup then the parade will take place and we would expect a large number of people to gather along the route. We will be supporting Liverpool City Council, who are organising the event, to ensure the event goes ahead safely and disruption to regular road users and people living and visiting the city can be minimised as much as possible.
“Along with the fans, the public will see a large number of police officers who will be highly visible throughout the area of the city centre and the route of the parade. They’ll be providing a reassuring presence and making sure the day is not only one to remember, but also an enjoyable and safe event.
“I would ask people intending to come to this parade to ensure they given themselves enough time to arrive and decide how they are going to get to the city given how busy the public transport networks and the roads will be. I would also ask that people use the whole route to view the parade because you will see exactly the same thing wherever you stand along the route to see it.
“Anyone attending needs to be sensible and ensure their own safety and I would advise against putting yourself or others in danger by climbing anything to see the parade. Given the players will be on a bus there is no need to do this and you will be able to see adequately from the side of the road.
“We wish Liverpool every success and are proud of their achievements in representing this city!”
It is expected there will be significant disruption around the parade route and travel advice and information will be made available as soon as possible. However, key points include:
• Consider walking and use public transport wherever possible.
• Be prepared for some changes to services, particularly for bus due to diversions.
• Allow time for and plan your journey. The transport network is expected to be very busy before and after the parade.
• Check timetables – be prepared for some changes to services, particularly bus for which some diversions will be in place.
• The Mersey Ferries are a good cross river option with regular services throughout the day.
Wayne Menzies Merseytravel’s Head of Rail and Chair of the Major Events Transport Board, said: “We have been working closely with transport operators, Liverpool City Council, Merseyside Police and other partners to ensure that we are doing all we can to help people get to the parade and home again safely, if it does go ahead.
“It’s really important that people plan their journeys and there will be plenty of advice and information available to keep them up to date on the travel picture.”
‘Live’ travel updates and alerts will be available from Merseytravel at www.merseytravel.gov.uk. Consider following @Merseytravel, #LFCparade and transport operators on Twitter for the latest information.