Historic Glen O'Dee hospital in Banchory destroyed by 'wilful' fire
A derelict sanatorium that featured on the BBC's Restoration programme has been destroyed by what is being treated as a deliberate fire.
Crews were called to the empty Glen O'Dee, built in Banchory in 1900, shortly before midnight.
More than 60 firefighters were involved. Police Scotland later said it was a "wilful fireraising".
Glen O'Dee featured in the Somerset Maugham book Creature of Circumstance after the author stayed there in 1917.
Det Sgt George Nixon said: "While the value of the damage has not yet been established this was a significant fire which has caused extensive destruction to a listed building.
"We are treating the fire as wilful and would appeal to anyone who saw anything unusual or suspicious in the area yesterday evening or has any information to contact police on 101 as soon as possible.
"This type of behaviour will absolutely not be tolerated. It goes without saying there is a significant risk of harm with such irresponsible behaviour."
No-one was injured and a nearby hospital was not evacuated.
Scottish Fire and Rescue Service incident commander Colin Grieve said: "There were challenging conditions but firefighters worked extremely hard to bring the fire under control and we are now scaling back our resources."
An NHS Grampian spokesperson said: "Thanks to the great efforts from our staff, all patients in the main hospital remain safe and comfortable away from the fire."
Glen O' Dee was built in 1900 as a sanatorium for patients suffering from tuberculosis.
The building was requisitioned by the Army during World War Two, and used as a billet for troops undergoing their training.
It was later converted into a hotel, then a home for the elderly before closing in 1998.
It later featured on the BBC's Restoration programme as locals campaigned to have it restored. However the campaign proved ultimately unsuccessful.