Firefighters praised as operation to tackle Glasgow fire continues

23 March 2018, 08:09

Sauchiehall Street

Emergency services remain at the scene a day after a major blaze broke out on a busy shopping street.

More than 120 firefighters dealt with the incident on Sauchiehall Street in Glasgow which started in the roof of the building which houses Victoria's nightclub at about 8.20am on Thursday.

An asbestos warning was issued to local residents and businesses as firefighters battled the blaze, which they brought under control by early afternoon.

Firefighters remained at the scene on Friday to dampen down the area, with several appliances involved.

Police said cordons would remain in place for several days while the safety of buildings was checked.

Chief Fire Officer Alasdair Hay said the blaze was one of the biggest the single service has had to deal with and praised the professionalism of the firefighters who dealt with it.

He said: "It's one of the biggest incidents we've had in the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service since its inception."

No-one was injured in the incident.

Thick smoke billowed across the pedestrian precinct as fire crews battled the fire, with fears it could spread to nearby buildings including the historic Pavilion Theatre.

Shows at the Pavilion and nearby Theatre Royal have been cancelled in the wake of the incident.

The Pavilion thanked emergency services for saving the "grand old lady" of Renfield Street.

A statement posted on the Pavilion Theatre Facebook page on Thursday evening said: "We managed to gain access tonight to ascertain the damage within the theatre.

"As the building across the lane is still currently pouring out smoke, this is still coming into the theatre.

"There is still a lot of smoke within the auditorium, and the seats, plasterwork, carpets and curtains are covered in a layer of black ash. We cannot see that we will be able to reopen within the next few days. "

They added: "We would like to thank everyone within all the emergency services who have done a great job in saving the Grand Old Lady of Renfield Street and hopefully we will reopen in the not too distant future.

"We would also like to thank everyone for their support at this time."

The fire was raised at First Minister's Questions in Holyrood with Nicola Sturgeon describing it as "extremely serious".

She later tweeted saying her "sincere thanks" go to firefighters and other emergency services for their "heroic work".