Businesses affected by Glasgow School of Art fire to be offered financial help

Written by Lindsay Thomson on 19 June 2018 in News

Glasgow City Council pledge assistance for local businesses impacted by art school blaze

Glasgow School of Art detail - Le Kizz

Businesses in Sauchiehall Street struggling in the wake of Friday’s fire will be offered financial help by Glasgow City Council.

The 72-hour fire caused severe damage to the iconic Glasgow School of Art building and nearby ABC music venue.

Following a meeting earlier today between the council and business owners, it was announced that those affected by the blaze and the fire in March further along the street will be given financial assistance with business rates.

The announcement was praised by a representative for the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), who described the meeting as “heartening”.

Hisashi Kuboyama, Development Manager for the FSB in the West of Scotland, said: “This is a smart move from the council and should give some city centre independent businesses extra help at a time when they need it most.

“What will be important is that help is available for firms beyond the so-called exclusion zones.

“Also, it was heartening to see council officers out in force today, getting in touch with traders and hearing about the need to keep local businesses up to date.

“As new plans are developed to turn around this part of the city, decision-makers must ensure local small businesses are involved at every stage.”

The meeting, chaired by Glasgow City Council leader Susan Aitken, also discussed the future of the historic Mackintosh building, home to Glasgow School of Art.

The Mackintosh building was undergoing a £35m restoration when the fire took hold on Friday night.

The blaze also severely damaged the nearby O2 ABC music venue and firefighters have been at the scene for several days.

At the height of the operation, 20 fire engines and more than 120 firefighters were mobilised.

In spite of the damage sustained, Aitken maintains that there is still hope for the landmark and the council’s focus is on saving it.

She told BBC Radio Scotland: “We are certainly not writing off the Mackintosh building yet.”

Scottish ministers also met with Historic Environment Scotland yesterday to discuss plans for the site.

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