On Sunday night a fire broke out in a tenement building in Glasgow’s Southside. The fire caused the three-story building to collapse and left residents homeless.

The fire had originated in Strawberry and Spice Garden, a grocers on Albert Drive, at the junction on Kenmure Street, and had spread on the flats above.

Fire crews were called in at 11:30 pm but the flames were so severe, the building collapsed once the blaze reached the roof. Fire crews worked until Monday evening to tame the flames and execute a “dampening down operation”.

An evacuation from the flats surrounding the shop was executed, and one man was taken by ambulance to hospital to treat him after smoke inhalation.

No one was severely injured by the fire, but it left local residents in shock.

A local person said: “The flames were very big! Everyone was standing outside when the building collapsed on itself. I am still in shock and I feel really bad for the families who had to witness this last night.”

This tragic incident caused part of Albert Drive to be closed for safety reasons, but also Forth Street, Glenapp Street, Kenmure Street and Keir Street. The roads have now reopened, and residents have gained access to their homes.

Other disruptions caused by the fire were shops having to close due to the inaccessible roads and the nearby Pollokshields Early Years Centre and the Pollokshields Primary School shutting down due to lack of electricity as a result of the blaze.

Credit: Pierre Engelhard

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) Incident Commander, James McNeil, said: “This has undoubtedly been a challenging and protracted incident that required considerable resources to meet

“Firstly, I would like to thank our crews for their efforts – working in difficult conditions throughout the night – in bringing this fire under control,” Commander McNeil said, “I would also like to thank the community for their patience and support throughout the incident, and recognise the hard work put in by our partners, other emergency services and the local authority.”

“The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service will continue to work alongside our Police Scotland colleagues to establish the full facts and circumstances of the fire.”

The arts venue Tramway, situated close to the incident, has been made available to the persons who were evacuated and needed a place to go when the incident took place.

A council spokeswoman said: “A rest centre is still in operation at Tramway where residents are being offered assistance and advice from our staff, and we will continue to liaise with the emergency services.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who represents the Pollockshields area in the Scottish Parliament, tweeted:  “1/Just visited the scene of last night’s devastating fire in Pollokshields in my constituency to say a heartfelt thank you to @fire_scot and @policescotland – it is due to the skill and bravery of our firefighters in particular that no lives were lost in this dreadful incident.”

Twitter. Nicola Sturgeon 11/11/19 – Screenshot

She also added: ”While the first priority is help for those directly affected, the location of this fire makes it a blow to the whole community. But Pollokshields is a strong community and I know everyone will rally round.”


Featured Image Source: Pierre Engelhard