MoonWalk gets full support

THOUSANDS of fundraisers are getting ready to parade the streets in their underwear to raise money to tackle breast cancer.

Both women and men are being encouraged to wear their decorated bras for the annual MoonWalk marathon and half-marathon this evening.

More than 10,000 women and 1000 men are set to take part in the 26.2 or 13.1-mile night-time races.

This year's theme, Moulin Rouge, will see streams of red silk and black lace in addition to the traditional pink tackle the walks, which start and finish at Inverleith Park. The route includes Arthur's Seat, the city centre, Leith and Portobello Promenade.

Organisers hope to raise more than 2 million from the event, and funds raised will go to The Breast Cancer Institute in Edinburgh, NHS hospitals throughout Scotland and Maggie's Centres.

The races, which kick off at around 11pm, will feature celebrity walkers including TV presenter and columnist Lorraine Kelly, plus thousands of people affected by breast cancer.

Diane Devlin, who describes her bra as a cross between Moulin Rouge and Wonder Woman, said she was walking the marathon in memory of her mother. The 55-year old, from Portobello, said: "I'm doing it because my mum died from breast cancer and I had it 20 years ago. I have three girls and it could affect them, so this is something we believe in supporting."

Susan McNaughton, 51, from Craigleith, will take part with her 13-year-old daughter and 55-year-old husband, who will be wearing a bra. She said she had been inspired to take part by a friend.

Susan said: "She's continuously battled it very bravely, so it makes those around her want to do something.

"After I'd signed up, our daughter decided that as she would be just past the minimum age limit of 13 - by only 16 days - she wanted to do the MoonWalk, too. This gave us a bit of a quandary - to walk at that age you need to be accompanied by a responsible adult, so we had to persuade her dad to do it.

"He's had his head in the sand so far and has only tried the bra on over his jumper, but hopefully he'll be fine. We've got the camera ready," she added.Several restaurants and cafes have pledged to be on hand to offer participants soup, snacks and water.

More than 1000 MoonWalk volunteers will also be on hand.

A number of buildings around the city will be lit up in pink in honour of the event.

A full list of road closures is available on the city council's website.

Council leader Jenny Dawe said: "The MoonWalk is a very worthwhile cause and once again we are delighted to be giving our support this year.

"I hope the weather holds up and stays dry and wish all the participants the very best in completing their challenge."

Lorraine Kelly said: "I will still be taking part in the Scottish MoonWalk in my Zimmer frame, it is a fantastic, emotional and fun night."