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More than Mackintosh’s required as clean-up of Glasgow School of Art continues after fire.
After fire crews fought to save the building on Friday, the clean up operation begins for staff at this iconic building in Glasgow. The first priority is now to retrieve items from the archives and collections which required immediate conservation. It is then hoped that the retrieval of students work from the building may be allowed.
Staff and assistants are taking items out of the building to be stored across the city where damage may be assessed. This process will take several days and the whole campus has been declared closed until Friday
Scottish Fire and Rescue's chief officer Alasdair Hay said that fire crews had done their best to save as much of the building's contents as possible. More than 200 members of the fire brigade fought for seven hours to preserve as much of the building as possible. Unfortunately the world famous library was lost, but much of the artwork and interiors have survived. It appears that once it was established that everyone had been safely evacuated firefighters were sent to the same spot on each floor of the building to contain the fire, and in effect establishing a firebreak which has meant that millions of pounds worth of artwork has been saved. The building is actually listed as a top priority in terms of firefighting and senior officers have spent years building a 3-D profile, so they knew exactly where to go. Initial accounts appear to suggest that the fire started in the basement and spread up to the roof but further investigations are still continuing on this to identify the cause.
Meanwhile the work contains to remove anything and everything that can be salvaged from the fire damaged areas, and all those involved are dressed according, even the academic staff are donning (no pun intended) the appropriate hi-vis vests and jackets as they take out boxes of documents and pieces of artwork.
Over the Bank Holiday weekend official bodies have already pledged their financial assistance to the rebuilding project the School of Art faces. The Culture Secretary confirmed that the Scottish Government will “support the funding effort required” and the UK government has stated that it will make a significant contribution towards the restoration costs. A fund has also been set up so that the public can also make donations. So hopefully, it won’t be too long before this building is restored to its former grandeur.