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11/11/2008Partick Burgh Hall to remain closed until December
A FIRE at Partick Burgh Hall has resulted in closure of the main hall until the end of the December.
The fire started in the evening of October 23 while around 40 children were inside at a dance class. Five fire crews attended the scene.
Everyone was evacuated from the hall safely and reunited with parents or guardians. At the time a spokesman for Strathclyde Fire and Rescue said: "The quick actions of fire crews ensured that the damage was limited."
Police were called at around 6 pm that day. A spokesman for Strathclyde Police said: "The cause of the fire is believed to be electrical and is not thought to be suspicious."
The building dates back to 1872. In 2004 it underwent refurbishment costing £835,000. It is used for meetings and events by a number of different groups.
Paul Considine, development and operations officer for Culture and Sport Glasgow, said there had been extensive damage to the wiring of the building, which must be repaired before the hall can be used again.
He said: "It is with great regret that we have to rearrange lets until the end of the year. It is a health and safety issue, we're doing everything we can."
He said they would continue monitoring the work as it is going on.
Other rooms in the building have not been affected by the fire and can still be used, including the lesser hall. However, they do not have the same capacity as the main hall.
Many people will be affected by the closure, particularly in the lead up to Christmas when events which had been planned for the hall will now have to be relocated.
The loss of the use of any main hall such as this is always going to have a knock on effect on the community served. But, what is worse - is the way in which a date of completion of any work is given, or in this case the date of re-opening.
In my opinion, I would rather the date given was more realistic, and expanded to allow for any delays, or unforseen circumstances with contractors.
As all too often, work carried out for Culture & Sport is not carried out on, or ahead of schedule.
Scotstoun Leisure Centre, with it's pool closure may not be a good comparison, but when the work was due to take just a few weeks, which turned into 2 months+ taking up the whole of the Schools Summer Holidays, its clear that giving any finishing date of work carried out to the public is not always the best thing to do.
Latest estimate is Easter but as Culture and Sport 's estimates are as long as a piece of string who knows when. But why after a refit the wiring fault was not noticed during inspections seems strange, was the rewiring part of the specification or was it left out as a cost saving item.