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Preparations begin for dismantling of fire-damaged Glasgow School of Art

Experts have warned that parts of the building are at risk of sudden collapse.

Engineers have begun preparations for the “managed dismantling” of Glasgow School of Art’s Mackintosh building after it was gutted by a second devastating fire.

Part of the building is to be demolished on safety grounds after experts warned it was at risk of sudden collapse.

Flames tore through the famous Charles Rennie Mackintosh-designed art school on the night of Friday June 15 and spread to nearby properties including the O2 ABC.

It came amid a major restoration project inside the Mackintosh building following a large fire in 2014.

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Exterior view of fire damage (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Glasgow School of Art (GSA) said its expert structural engineers, David Narro Associates, and contractor, Reigart, have prepared the methodology for the work which needs to be undertaken on the Mackintosh Building, which has been shared with Glasgow City Council Building Control and Historic Environment Scotland.

GSA said: “Over the weekend work to assess the condition of the Mackintosh Building continued with further drone footage collected.

“Preparation work for the managed dismantling of the elements of the building that have been deemed dangerous got under way, on schedule on Monday.

“The main crane has been relocated to the corner of Sauchiehall Street and Dalhousie Street, and a second crane is expected to join it on Tuesday.

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The scene in Glasgow after a fire at the Mackintosh building (Douglas Barrie/PA)

“The work to begin dismantling the south facade will start as soon as possible following approval of the methodology by Glasgow City Council Building Control.”

The cordon for the whole site, which includes the O2 ABC and Jumping Jacks, remains under the control of Glasgow City Council.

At the height of the incident more than 120 firefighters were involved in tackling the blaze after the alarm was raised at 11.19pm on the night.

Businesses and 33 homes within a cordon zone remain evacuated, with leader of Glasgow City Council Susan Aitken saying it is not known when the site will be safe.

The local authority is making a hardship fund available in co-operation with the Scottish Government, with each affected household able to apply for £3,000.

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