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Glasgow School of Art from the Mac Photographic Archive
Casandra Philpott/The Mac Photographic Archive

Glasgow School of Art has suffered another huge fire

It's been four years since the last incident

History is heartbreakingly repeating itself. On the evening of June 15 in Glasgow, reports emerged on Twitter — and were later confirmed by the BBC — that the Glasgow School of Art's Mackintosh Building had caught fire. This is the second time in four years that the Glasgow School of Art has faced a devastating fire. 

At approximately 11:35 pm local time, law student Aiden Dick posted a series of videos on their Twitter account showing the school’s Mackintosh building up in flames. “Glasgow School of Art is on fire again. Heartbreaking. My thoughts go to all students and staff, and I hope no one was caught in the blaze,” Aiden wrote as the caption to the first video of three that was posted. 

Aiden continued to film the fire for approximately 30 minutes, commenting that despite the fire crews best efforts to fight the blaze, the fire only seemed to grow. “In the space of a few minutes, the fire has grown and the smoke is getting worse,” Aiden wrote just minutes after his first video, going on to write a final comment to accompany his third video: “This has just got a lot worse. No words can explain. Hope everyone is safe.”

The BBC reported on the fire and its aftermath on June 16. It seems the results of the fire are once again a crushing blow to Glasgow School of Art, who’ve worked hard to repair and recover from the 2014 blaze. The BBC reports the fire likely began at approximately 11:20 pm on Friday evening, starting in the Mackintosh building but quickly spreading to the on-campus nightclub and O2 ABC music venue, the latter two reportedly sustaining “extensive damage”.

On Saturday morning, officials for the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service told the BBC that the fire had been successfully contained but that homes in range of the fire had been evacuated as a safety precaution. Additionally, 50 firefighters in nine fire trucks arrived on the scene on Friday evening to fight the crippling blaze. During the fire's peak, 120 firefighters in 20 fire trucks were reportedly on the scene working to subdue the flames. 

This fire has struck just one year before the school was set to reopen the newly-renovated Mackintosh library, which had been extensively damaged in the 2014 fire. It was a project that had reportedly cost between £20m and £35 million. 

At the time of reporting, it is still unclear what caused the fire on Friday evening.