The Clutha Tragedy: Funds roll in for victims

DONATIONS to a fund set up to help those affected by the Clutha helicopter disaster have been flooding in from overseas.

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The disaster fund has been boosted by overseas donations
The disaster fund has been boosted by overseas donations

Fund organisers said they have been overwhelmed by the number of calls coming in to pledge support - including from as far away as Switzerland.

The fund was kicked-off with a £20,000 donation from the city council, with Alex Salmond announcing that the Scottish Government would match that amount.

Since then there has been a steady stream of people and organisation anxious to help the families of the nine people who died when a police helicopter plunged through the roof of the busy Clydeside pub.

The appeal fund will also help the survivors and anyone affected by the tragedy.

Lord Provost Sadie Docherty said: "I'm very proud of the generosity with which the public has responded to the appeal so far - both in Glasgow and much further afield.

"We have also heard from a lot of people who are planning events and their own fundraising activities in the weeks to come."

Council bosses said members of the public have been calling up to say they are planning charity events and music nights for the fund.

So far, thousands of pounds has been raised, with much more expected to roll in during the coming weeks.

Glasgow City Council was unable to give an exact total for the fund as cash is still being counted.

The Royal Bank of Scotland computer glitch has also held up the tally.

North and South Lanarkshire councils have each agreed a £5000 donation to the appeal.

North Lanarkshire Council leader Jim McCabe said: "Our heartfelt condolences go out to all those affected by the tragedy at the Clutha and particularly those who have lost their loved ones.

"One of our residents, John McGarrigle from Cumbernauld, lost his life in the helicopter accident and this is a desperately sad time for many people across Scotland.

"As a neighbouring authority, we wish to support those affected in every way we can.

"We have offered practical assistance to our colleagues at Glasgow City Council and will be making a donation of £5000 to the Clutha appeal fund."

South Lanarkshire Council leader Eddie McAvoy also paid tribute to the victims of the tragedy.

He said: "I know I speak for everyone in South Lanarkshire when I say the tragedy in Glasgow on Friday night shocked us all.

"It was with great sadness I learned two of the victims, Mark O'Prey and Robert Jenkins, were from East Kilbride. I know other local people have been touched directly by this awful event, too, and our thoughts are with all the victims and their families."

Last night floral tributes continued to be laid for the dead.

More than a thousands bouquets and wreaths have now been left by members of the pubic as a memorial next to the River Clyde.

Since Saturday well-wishers and family members have been visiting the scene to pay their respects and give their support to those affected by the tragedy.

Glasgow City Council has said it will maintain the site as long as people continue to set flowers down.

As people laid flowers near to the Clutha Vaults, forensics experts continued to piece together the events of Friday night.

When the Police Scotland team finish their investigation the pub will be handed over to Glasgow City Council's Buildings Control team.

Experts will then assess the extent of structural damage before deciding when the roads around the devastated pub will reopen.

A police cordon remains around the site and looks set to stay in place for some time.

Roads remain closed, with traffic diverted away from Stockwell Street, Bridgegate and parts of Clyde Street and the Gorbals Street bridge.

Meanwhile, neighbouring business Dance House, based on the Bridgegate, issued a statement to say that the incident means staff cannot access its offices.

It said: "Due to the tragic incident in Glasgow on Friday, we are unable to access the office for the time being.

"All who have been affected by this tragedy are in our thoughts.

"If you have any queries about our classes or bookings for our Spring term, please call the Dance House mobile on 07747 742 547. Please bear with us."

l Anyone in need of support from the emergency fund should call 0141 287 0999.

Anyone wishing to donate to the fund by debit or credit card should call 0141 287 7878.

Donations can also be made by cash or cheque at the council's Service Desk at 45 John Street, Glasgow, G1 1JE.

Bank and direct debit payments can be made to Clutha Appeal Fund, Sort Code: 83-44-00, Account 10804129.

Finance

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