George IV Fire LIVE: Emergency services attend fire in the Edinburgh Old Town as smoke pours out near iconic Elephant House Cafe

Emergency services are in attendance at a fire in the Capital’s historic Old Town as George IV Bridge is closed off.

By Rachel Mackie, Beth Murray, Gary Flockhart
Tuesday, 24th August 2021, 10:23 am
Updated Tuesday, 24th August 2021, 3:06 pm

Follow here for all updates on a major fire in Edinburgh city centre.

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George IV Fire LIVE: Emergency services attend fire in the Edinburgh Old Town as smoke pours out near iconic Elephant House Cafe

George IV Bridge Fire LIVE: Emergency services attend fire in Edinburgh Old Town

Last updated: Tuesday, 24 August, 2021, 19:37

Scottish Ambulance Service has confirmed that a person has been taken to hospital after they attended the incident.

Our reporter Beth Murray caught up with someone who lives in the building.

Marco, 22, lives above Oz Bar.

He says that the fire alarm went off around 6 in the morning.

“We didn’t really know what it was. We checked all the rooms. We could smell smoke but I went down onto the street and could see no one.

“Then the fire fighters came and they we like ‘are you guys alright’ and we said ‘yea’.

“They said, alright, you can go back to bed.

“Around 8 am the smoke alarm went off again and this time we could really smell the smoke.

“That’s when I said somethings wrong, so I went downstairs and saw that the fire fighters had completely broken the door.

“We went outside and the firefighters said we had to evacuate.”

Marco left the building in his pyjamas and has been outside since.

He added that they thought the fire was from the restaurant Merchant - but they aren’t sure.

There is also a furniture store that he says was also on fire.

They are not sure what condition the flat is in.

A couple of friends are going to bring them food and Kick Ass Hostel gave them coffees.

Our reporter continued:

Now I’m standing at the bottom of Candlemaker Row I can see streams of water.

When the police drive down the Cowgate, they’re driving through it all flowing down the street.

On Victoria Street, you wouldn’t know anything was wrong here.

Just come round the corner and you can see the first police cordon.

Right when you arrive the Youth Hostel on the corner (at the foot of Candlemaker row).

Police have closed the road to cars and pedestrians.

Not a lot of people gathered here.

Our reporter Beth Murray is at the scene.

Police have cordoned off from Forrest Road and the smell of smoke has spread across most of the centre of the city.

“There are lots of bystanders watching around while the emergency services were working.

“When I arrived on the scene I aimed to get down Chambers Street but the route was closed so the bus went a different way.

“There is a lot of traffic in the area.

“There are dozens of fire engines all around the area.

“Police weren’t able to confirm where the fire had started.”

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