A fire broke out this morning (Thursday, May 18) at the £2.5 million community hub due to open next month in Gorebridge, devastating the group that has delivered the project.
The eagerly-anticipated Gorebridge Beacon is being delivered by the Gorebridge Community Development Trust with support from Midlothian Council.
Police and fire crews were called to the Hunterfield Road building at 4.40am this morning, with the road then closed to traffic until 9am.
Fire crews are still on site and are looking into the cause of the fire.
Gorebridge Beacon business manager Jane Burridge said: “We are devastated, absolutely devastated.
“It’s unbelievable, because we were so close, weeks away from completion.
“However, the community spirit has been lovely, we have received lots of calls with messages of support.
“It’s a small community and this was obviously a big thing for the community.
“So people are sad that this has happened. It’s most upsetting.”
The Director of Resources at Midlothian Council, John Blair said: “We’ve obviously been working very closely with the local community to get the building funded, built and open so to hear about such a damaging fire just six weeks to completion is obviously a huge blow.
“The council recognises the impact the fire will have on the development trust and the community and we’ll continue to assist in any way we can.”
A Fire Brigade spokesman said: “The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is currently in attendance at a fire at commercial premises in Gorebridge.
“Four fire appliances were mobilised at 4.38am on Thursday, May 18 to the incident at Hunterfield Road.
“Firefighters are using high pressure hoses to tackle the fire in the roof area.”
A Police Scotland spokesman said: “Police in Midlothian were called to attend a construction site on Hunterfield Road in Gorebridge around 4.40am on Thursday 18 May following a report of a fire. Hunterfield Road was closed by officers until around 9am and a joint investigation is currently underway with our colleagues in the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service to establish the cause of the fire.”