Glasgow & West Scotland

Hydro arena blaze damage bill could reach £5m

Hydro fire
Image caption The Hydro blaze started in the roof space of the new arena

The cost of the damage caused by a blaze at Glasgow's new Hydro arena could reach £5m, it has been estimated.

Last month's fire, which broke out in the roof during construction work, led to fears that the official opening would be delayed.

But John Sharkey, chief executive of the venue's operators, SECC, said he had no plans to reschedule dates.

Rod Stewart's first night concert is expected to go ahead as planned on 30 September.

'Moving at pace'

Mr Sharkey said the final bill for the damage caused by the blaze would be between £3m and £5m - but rejected suggestions that the opening shows could be postponed.

He said: "At the moment, we are not even looking at that. We are just looking at getting the building finished."

He added: "As things stand at the moment there is a lot to do but we are not cancelling the opener because we think we can do it.

"There has been a hell of a lot done in a short period of time. It is still moving at pace."

The 12,000-seat entertainment venue was hit by a fire on Saturday 8 June.

The damage, understood to have been caused by sparks from welding work on the roof, was not as severe as first feared.

Mr Sharkey told The Herald newspaper: "It is looking pretty decent, tidy, inside."

But he conceded: "We are really going to be on a bit of a hairy journey right up to the end of September."

Mr Sharkey said that before the blaze, completion had been on track for the end of August.

"We are now going to be absolutely to the wire in getting the building open on time," he added.

The opening week at the new venue includes shows by Rod Stewart, Fleetwood Mac and Bruno Mars, along with Jesus Christ Superstar.

Mr Sharkey expects the Hydro to bring around £130m a year to Glasgow in net additional expenditure, on top of the £357m which the SECC generates at present.

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