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10 June 2021

Art school fire investigation could be complete by end of this year

10 June 2021

The investigation into the devastating blaze at Glasgow School of Art’s Mackintosh building almost three years ago is expected to be completed by the end of 2021, the fire service has said.

The world-renowned building, designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, was extensively damaged when a fire broke out late on June 15, 2018 as it neared the end of a £35 million restoration project following a previous fire in May 2014.

At the height of the 2018 incident, more than 120 firefighters were involved in battling the flames, which also took hold of nearby music venue the 02 ABC.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) has been carrying out an investigation into the blaze and it has now said it anticipates it will conclude by the end of this year.

Mackintosh Building fire (PA Archive)

Assistant Chief Officer Stuart Stevens, SFRS director of service delivery, said: “The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service investigation into the 2018 fire at the Glasgow School of Art remains ongoing.

“While it is not possible at present to provide a definitive timescale, we would anticipate the conclusion of our investigation by the end of the year.

“We would like to thank everyone for their understanding and patience as we continue with this significant fire investigation.”

The fire service previously said damage caused to the Mackintosh building in the 2018 blaze was “far greater” than that from the fire in 2014, and the impact on the building had complicated the investigative process.

Glasgow School of Art said it will not comment until the investigation is complete.

The fire which tore through the Mackintosh building in 2014 began when a projector ignited gases from expanding foam used in a student project, an investigation found.

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