Queues for 'Swiftie' cocktails and T-shirts as Taylor Swift fans travel to Murrayfield

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The superstar singer will kick off the sell-out UK leg of her Eras tour at Murrayfield Stadium this weekend, with 220,000 people expected at three shows.

The Scottish capital has been gripped by Swiftmania ahead of the shows with huge signs in shop windows welcoming fans to the city. There is not a hotel bed to be had in the city, with fans seeking accommodation advised to stay in Glasgow.

Shops have been selling 'in my Swiftie era' t-shirts and and city centre trams are adorned with advertising for her newest album The Tortured Poets Department.

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And hundreds of fans have been queuing for merchandise outside the stadium, which has seen its Scottish Gas sponsorship rebranded to 'Scottish Lass'. Sophie Snow, 29, has tickets to all three of the Murrayfield gigs.

She said: "I'm looking forward to being in a room full of people who love who I love - it's going to be the best feeling ever. I would really love to hear Cornelia Street because I wrote a book that's actually set on Cornelia Street so that would be really special to hear that. I've got three outfits planned - so for night one, I'm dressing up in her willow outfit that she wears on tour.

"For night two, I'm going as midnight rain and my husband is going as sunshine and then I've got a top with all the eras on and I've made a cardigan for night three. I think it's going to welcome a lot of people to Edinburgh for the first time - as a lot of international fans are coming.

"I feel like these events aren't as common in Scotland so it would be nice to bring a lot of people in because hopefully they will come back."

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Katielee Arrowsmith / SWNS

Susan Berry, 48, queued up for merchandise from around 8am and was 'very excited' for the much-awaited show, for which tickets went on sale last July.

She said: "I didn't want to buy my merch on the days of the concerts so I took a half day off work to get into the queue early. I also don't want to be carrying the merchandise at the show so I came at 8am this morning - but it's very cold and it might rain.

"I've never seen her live but I've watched it on Disney and watched the livestreams so I've actually seen it almost 100 times. The thought of getting to see it actually live now three times is very exciting.

"I'm most excited for the surprise songs but the fanbase is such a nice fanbase and it's a very friendly environment and it's safe and happy. I've listened to this woman's music every single day so the combination of actually getting to hear her perform live is just so exciting to me."

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Bethen Hodges, 35, is going to the first Edinburgh concert and says she is 'so excited' to hear the surprise songs, where the mega star plays two random acoustic tunes.

She's also looking forward to trading friendship bracelets with other fans, because they are all always 'so nice to each other.' Bethen, whose outfit is inspired by Taylor's 2022 Midnights album, said: "It's my first time seeing her and I've been so excited that sometimes I cry about it.

"I'm excited for everything - the thought of trading bracelets makes me a bit nervous but I know everyone going will be lovely, because Taylor's fans are nice to each other.

"I just can't wait to see it in real life and hear the surprise songs. I watch all the live streams of when she does other shows to hear the surprise songs and I'm just hoping she's going to do one of my favourites.

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"One of my favourite songs is 'You're On Your Own, Kid' and that's one of her favourite songs as well but she's just done that in Lyon. But I think I would like maybe another song from Midnights, like Labyrinth, or something new from The Tortured Poets Department that she's not done yet.

"I'll have anything really but I would prefer something from one of her more recent albums but honestly I'll be happy with anything."

Eleanor Osada, 27, will be seeing the 'Style' singer perform twice this weekend and she says the preparation for the concert feels like 'the run up to Christmas.' She said: "It's pretty much all that's on my mind at the moment, it genuinely feels like the run up to Christmas.

"The double whammy of having Paramore supporting the tour is the most mind-bending thing for me, as they're my number one band forever.

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"As for the show itself, I can't wait to experience the theatre of it all, and hear songs I haven't had chance to hear yet - from Reputation onwards, for me. It'll be like an all-night singalong, and I'll probably sing myself hoarse."

Eleanor will be travelling from Sunderland for the shows but thinks it's 'lovely' how the concerts have brought Edinburgh 'a lot of positive attention.' She said: "Whenever I go on TikTok, I see small businesses and hotels in the city all decked out in Swiftie attire, with bracelet making stations, stickers and the like.

"It will definitely bring a lot of positive attention and appeal to people wanting to extend the concert to almost a holiday - or a days long event.

"It's so lovely for a tour to feel so communal and wholesome, especially considering the wide age range of the audience, everyone is included. Edinburgh, Cardiff, Liverpool and London are right to hype up the shows rather than just letting them slide by - it's beneficial for everyone involved."

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Carla McCormack, 38, taught a class at Glasgow Clyde College - where she taught non-fans everything they needed to know about the singer. This included how she became famous, which songs are about her ex-boyfriends and what chants her fans sing when at the shows.

Carla said: "The idea came about because there's lots of people going to the Era's tour who might not be Swifties, because they are either parents or plus ones.

"It's also a long show - it's 46 songs and over three hours so we wanted to make sure people know the in jokes and they know the chants. We only had an hour and a half so we started about the backstory and the key players in the story, such as Kanye West and Scooter Braun.

"Then we spoke about ex-boyfriends and which song related to which ex and then did we some of the chants at the concert. It was really fun and a really uplifting 90 minutes - everyone who came along really through themselves into it, even if they weren't Swifties."

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Carla added that people are coming from all over the world for the shows, so she hopes it will do 'good things for the local economy.' She said: "I think the reality is that people are coming to Edinburgh from all over the world.

"There's a Facebook group for the shows and there's lots of people who are flying from the states or Europe. There's going to be an awful lot of money spent in Edinburgh over the course of the weekend so we are hoping it will do good things for the local economy as well."

Swiftmania is expected to pump as much as £1 billion into the British economy this summer with around 1.2 million tickets sold for gigs in Liverpool, Cardiff and London.

Councillor Val Walker, head of Edinburgh Council's culture and communities committee, said: "As we get ready to welcome hundreds of thousands of Swifties to our vibrant city, we are eager for everyone to have an enjoyable experience, not only at the show, but on their way before and after.

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"Whilst we relish hosting the biggest and best events and want everyone attending to truly enjoy themselves, it's important that we're conscious of our residents. We ask that visitors are considerate and respectful of them whilst enjoying our fantastic capital city.

"These concerts are just the start of an amazing summer of events and culture here in Edinburgh."

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