UPDATE: The Glasgow School of Art Media Centre reports "With the incident under control indications are the firefighters' efforts have ensured more than 90 per cent of the structure is viable and protected up to 70 per cent of the contents - including many students' work."
A serious fire has broken out at the Glasgow School of Art, Charles Rennie Mackintosh's 1909 masterpiece. The extent of the damage is unclear at the moment, but BBC News is reporting that the fire is believed to have started in the basement, and has spread to the upper floors, where it is breaking windows and smoke is billowing from the building. Images, reactions and updates from twitter after the break.
The BBC is reporting that the fire was started by a projector which "exploded" in the basement.
Fortunately it seems everyone involved is safe
The Mackintosh building is on fire, all have been evacuated & we will post updates as we get them. Currently setting up an incident number.— Glasgow School Art (@GSofA) May 23, 2014
RIBA Journal Critic Hugh Pearman is not taking the news well.
It's looking like a disaster. I'm sitting here crying.— Hugh Pearman (@hughpearman) May 23, 2014
This from Guardian Critic Oliver Wainwright.
Horrifying video of Mackintosh building in flames, taken by my cousin across the road http://t.co/eC69vtQyDM— Olly Wainwright (@ollywainwright) May 23, 2014
Mackintosh fire started in basement and spread up west side of bdg to the hen run at top, so library probably now completely gone. Tragic.— Olly Wainwright (@ollywainwright) May 23, 2014
Some of the first detailed images of the damage.
President of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland Iain Connelly has issued the following statement:
"Scotland has seen the loss of an international treasure which reflects the genius of one of our greatest ever architects. The whole of the architectural profession in Scotland will, I am sure, join with me in sending out a message to the students and staff of the school... It is too early to talk about what happens now, but the architectural profession in Scotland will do anything it can to help in any way."
Chief Fire Officer Alasdair Hay gave a media briefing in which he confirmed that firefighters "had been liaising with university staff and were working to save 'iconic items'," and adding that structural engineers were on site to advise firefighters and help save the fabric of the building. Moments later, when asked about restoration of the building chair of the board of governors at Glasgow School of Art Muriel Gray said "We don't know what's been destroyed. It's a waiting game."
The Institute of Conservation is asking for volunteers to help with the "emergency disaster recovery of artefacts and interiors".
Glasgow School of Art fire. Volunteers for emergency disaster recovery of artefacts and interiors please contact Icon.— Icon (@Conservators_uk) May 23, 2014