Fire families have 'lost everything'

FAMILIES who had to suddenly evacuate their homes at 3.30am after a fire broke out in a pub have "lost everything" after the building had to be immediately demolished.

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Eighteen people spent a second night in temporary accommodation last night after the blaze destroyed six flats above the George pub in Causeyside Street, Paisley.

One source told the Evening Times everything inside the building "was toast" and Renfrewshire Council's building control officers decided demolition was the only way to make the area safe.

First-stage demolition work took around five hours yesterday and 47 properties were left without power in the area while it was carried out. Nearby roads were also closed.

The council has now launched a range of support services for people affected.

All 18 people made homeless have been provided with short-term accommodation by the council or have made their own arrangements.

Local MSP George Adam, whose office is close to the site of the blaze, said: "This is a sad end for the building that has stood on one of Paisley's landmark streets for more than a century.

"The main thing is the families are safe.

"They have lost everything within their homes, including photographs and mementoes that can't be replaced. It must be devastating for them.

"We have to help them build their lives again."

No-one was injured in the fire, which started at 3.25am on Sunday, severely damaging the building and prompting a major response from Renfrewshire Council, police and firefighters.

Police said inquiries into the cause of the fire were continuing.

Renfrewshire Council leader Mark Macmillan said: "Once the hose pipes have been rolled up and the police cars have gone, the council takes over the recovery phase of the incident."

Information can be had by calling 0141 618 4399, or online at: www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/georgesstreet and on Twitter @rencouncil news#GeorgeSt, facebook/renfrew shirecouncil.

An information point is also operating at 58 Causeyside Street.

ewan.fergus@ eveningtimes.co.uk

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