City street off limits after blaze
Seven fire engines and 30 firefighters attended a serious blaze at a landmark Stirling city centre building in February 2018.
They worked through the night to extinguish the fire in the second floor at 41-44 Murray Place and prevented it spreading to nearby buildings. The last appliance left the scene at 11.40am the following morning.
The three-floor corner building housed businesses Kings’ Barbers on the ground floor and Wujo, which sold bongs and water pipes, on the first floor.
Scottish Fire and Rescue were alerted around 6.15pm. It was understood that the second floor, in which the fire appeared to have taken hold, was used as a storage area.
There were no reported injuries but residents in the neighbouring 37 Murray Place building, which contains six flats, on the first, second and third floors, had to leave their homes.
Scottish Fire and Rescue Stirling and Clackmannanshire senior officer Roddie Keith said: “On arrival, the fire was already well developed – but quick and decisive action ensured that the fire was contained to one area and extinguished.”
By the Monday morning Murray Place remained closed to traffic as demolition contractors examined the top floor area of the building using a cherry picker.
Fire had gutted the second floor of the building and piles of charred wood and metal lay on the pavement outside the building.
A Stirling Council sign on a fence preventing access to the site stated: ‘Dangerous Building Keep Out.’
The building, which is not listed, sits within the Stirling Town and Royal Park Conservation Area. It was once occupied by the Stirling Observer.
A Stirling Council spokesperson said at the time: “Council staff responded swiftly to support emergency services following the report of a fire in Murray Place on Friday night.
“Our building control team has assessed the structure and been liaising with the property owner and updating neighbouring residents and businesses.
“Work is now progressing on site to make the structure safe and the road will remain closed until the necessary works have concluded. Pedestrian access through the street will be maintained.”
Stirling Police said they were not treating the fire as suspicious.
A Scottish Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said that the investigation into the fire was ongoing and the cause is was yet unknown.
Two Stirling University students told how they were sleeping while, just feet away, fire was engulfing the building.
Philosophy student George Booth (19) and 20-year-old Jason Thornewilltraumann, who was studying English and Philosophy, had been in the top floor Murray Place flat closest to the fire at the time.
George’s girlfriend Sarah Barber had been cooking a meal in the kitchen.
George explained: “I heard the sound of a fairly powerful explosion about 6pm and thought it was unusual. Jason was sleeping and I was having a nap. I went back to sleep. The only reason we woke up in the end was my girlfriend who was visiting at the time and making a meal. It’s fortunate Sarah was there.”