'˜I was in tears because I had missed it' '“ Sheffield woman misses friends wedding due to gridlocked traffic in city centre

A woman from Sheffield was forced to miss a family friend's wedding on Saturday, after the arrival of thousands of students in Sheffield caused '˜gridlock' in the city centre.

Tuesday, 25th September 2018, 10:41 am
Updated Tuesday, 25th September 2018, 11:12 am
Jessica Liversidge missed a family friends wedding at the weekend, after getting stuck in traffic in the city centre

Jessica Liversidge, 30, was making her way from Woodseats to the Crucible in Sheffield when she got stuck in standstill traffic near Bramall Lane.  

The influx of students preparing for the new academic year, coupled with Sheffield United's match at Bramall Lane resulted in travel chaos.

Traffic was at a standstill in the city centre on Saturday

This meant that the journey, which Jessica says would normally take around 10 minutes, took over an hour meaning that she was unable to see her family friend walk down the aisle. 

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She said: 'I set off at 10 to two, as we were told to be there for two with the ceremony starting at half past.

'I was in a taxi and we got to the bottom of Queens Road, I thought we could use the bus lanes so we'd be fine.

'However, there was so much traffic heading towards Bramall Lane. It didn't move from about ten past two for a good thirty or forty minutes.'

Traffic snarling up outside the ground before kick off during the Sky Bet Championship match at Bramall Lane Stadium, Sheffield. Picture date 22nd September 2018. Picture credit should read: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

She says that during the journey she became '˜incredibly anxious' and couldn't breathe with the thought of missing the wedding.

'My sister was travelling from Frecheville and it took them two and a half hours to get there as they were travelling down the Parkway. She said they moved about 20 yards in 20 minutes.

'They were two hours late and they set off before me, she told me she was nearly sick in the car.'

The police were called in to ease congestion, meaning that Jessica was eventually able to arrive at the wedding.

'I got there at five to three and missed the whole thing. I arrived just as they were walking out the Crucible.'

Jessica, who has known the bride Harriet Bailey since she was 4-years-old, was devastated to miss the momentous occasion.

'I just burst into tears when the bride came out,' she added. 'She thought I was crying because she was getting married but I was in tears because I had missed it.'

Harriet and her partner had tried to hold off the wedding as quite a few guests hadn't arrived, but were had a limited time slot with the venue.

Jessica added: 'It's not something you think would happen for the sake of some students moving and a football match being on.

'It was like one of those dreams where you're running and running, and not moving anywhere. It was surreal.'

Speaking of the travel disruption, Kevin Cookson, Senior Communications Officer for Sheffield United, said: 'We were aware, in advance, of the potential traffic problems for Saturday's fixture and used all of our communications channels in an attempt to reach as many Sheffield United fans as possible.

'These included the official website, social media and local radio, to advise those intending to attend the game to plan extra journey time. We also informed our visitors, Preston North End. At kick-off we did not have queues at the turnstiles or at the ticket office.'

A Sheffield Hallam University spokesperson said: 'Whilst the University doesn't control the scheduling of football matches or events such as the Sheffield 10K, we do share our academic calendar with relevant partners and stakeholders well in advance and make every possible effort to provide new and returning students with travel guidance.'

The Star reached out to Sheffield City Council for comment.