Skibo Castle bosses thanks fire crews

16 October 2018, 07:03 | Updated: 16 January 2019, 15:36

skibo castle

Bosses at a historic Highland castle have thanked emergency services for their quick actions to contain a fire that broke out in the roof.

Dozens of firefighters were involved in tackling the blaze at Skibo Castle near Dornoch in Sutherland on Monday evening.

The luxury four-storey building played host to the wedding of Madonna and Guy Ritchie in 2000 and is home to a prestigious private club.

Two people were helped to safety by Scottish Fire and Rescue Service crews and all guests and staff were evacuated safely and fully accounted for.

The hotel said the disruption caused by the fire was limited.

Peter Crome, chairman of Skibo Castle and The Carnegie Club, said: "We are grateful for the quick action of the emergency services and also for the exceptional response of our own staff, who assisted guests and volunteered to help in any way they could.

"Due to the fact that the fire was quickly contained, disruption has thankfully been limited and just a few rooms have suffered water damage."

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service was alerted to the incident at 8.18pm after the alarm was raised by a member of staff at the castle.

Six fire engines and one aerial appliance were immediately sent to the hotel, with further resources mobilised afterwards.

Skibo Castle said the first crew arrived within five minutes of the emergency call being made.

Guests at the castle were relocated to lodges on the estate and to hotels in Dornoch, bosses said.

Police said around 40 guests were moved to alternative accommodation and the fire was contained by 9.45pm.

Crews left at around 1.30am and a single fire engine returned to the hotel on Tuesday morning to ensure the area remained safe.

The exact cause of the fire has yet to be determined, the hotel said.

SFRS group manager for the Highlands Mark Loynd said: "I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the swift and professional response of our firefighters.

"This was a challenging incident at a famous and very historic building but our crews responded effectively to consign the fire to one small area.

"I would also like to thank our teams in operations control and our partners whose assistance was invaluable in helping to protect the community."