Published Date: Sep 14th, 2023
The building was damaged beyond repair by a fire last weekend and has been cordoned off since to keep the public safe. Engineers confirmed this week that the building was dangerous and unstable and full demolition was the only option.
Nigel Kerr, Head of Protective Services said: “Demolition work has started which should end the disruption experienced by local residents and businesses in the area. I’d like to thank everyone for their patience while essential work by Scottish Gas Network was carried out to make the site safe.
“Now that demolition has started, we hope to get residents back in their homes and businesses back open as quickly as possible.”
Demolition will take place in two phases with the façade on Hunter Street being brought down to first floor level. Work then will pause while SGN reconnects local gas supplies and contractors do what they can to salvage any parts of the building that have historic value for the community. The council is in discussions with the owner of the building to see what can be done to preserve any items of historical interest and keep them safe. Full demolition will then continue.
Added Nigel: “To see such a beautiful historic building reduced to rubble brings home the devastating impact that anti-social behaviour has on the whole community. It just wasn’t viable, or safe, to save the building and our priority has to be public safety and the needs of the local residents and businesses.
“We will be communicating directly with affected residents and businesses to let them know when it’s safe to return. Roads will also re-open when it's safe and we'll work as quickly as we can to get the town centre back to normal.”