Tynecastle
Hearts v Hibernian
Championship League
Sunday August 17th, 2014, 12.30pm
Matt Lawton
(Hibernian fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

It's an Edinburgh derby, you have to be there!

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

I set off driving from my home in Leigh, Lancashire at 7.15am and parked up on Stevenson Avenue, just off Gorgie Road, by 11.15am. It was roughly a 20 minute walk to the away section from this parking spot although I suspect it would be much quicker if we were in the home ends - it is quite a detour to the Roseburn End of the ground although it did give us a chance to get up close to Murrayfield Stadium while walking round.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

We pretty much went straight to the ground, though in the past I've been to the Murrayfield Hotel which is always rammed with Hibs fans on derby day. We didn't encounter too many Hearts fans on our walk to the ground as the direction we were walking can only lead you to the away section, but certainly the closer you go to the Roseburn area, the more obvious a police presence there was.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

Despite three stands being redeveloped in the past 20 years, Tynecastle really does still have a feel of an 'old school' ground, especially with the Main Stand on one side which must be going on for 100 years old. It has always struck me as odd that Hearts operate different prices for an 'upper tier' and 'lower tier' despite there being nothing of the sort, other than there being a walkway after the first 8 rows of the stand which dictates whether you are 'upper' or 'lower'.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, toilets etc...

As appears to be the recent fashion of Edinburgh derbies, the game wasn't really much to write home about. Plenty of guts, tackles (and free kicks), but very little in the way of goalmouth action or flowing passages of play. The Hearts fans were surprisingly quiet for much of the game, certainly much quieter than on previous visits, while the Hibs fans were especially vocal, at least until going 1-0 down (eventually losing 2-1).

The stewards were much, much friendlier than on any of my previous visits and were particularly helpful for any supporters (including myself) who had flags, directing us to a section that seems to have seats taken out and now has a section of scaffolding which is ideal for flags.

We didn't have any pies but the soft drinks were decent enough, served in fast-food style paper cups with plastic lids and straws rather than bottles. The toilets were still in working order with a few minutes of the game left which is far more of a bonus that you might think when compared to previous visits.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Our parking spot seemed to be a touch of genius as it cut out a huge chunk of the traffic on Gorgie Road and meant we were back on the Edinburgh bypass within 10 minutes of getting back to the car, albeit after the 20 minute walk from the ground. It would probably be a much shorter and direct walk from the home section, but as is customary for the derbies, you aren't able to walk around the ground away from the usual away fans access route.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Never good to lose a derby, though it is something I'm unfortunately more than used to! The early kick off at least meant it was perfect timing to get a haggis supper from "Biggar's First Chippy" on the route back to the M74!

 

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