Remembering The Firefighters Who Lost Their Lives At Kilbirnie Street, Glasgow

red plaque is to be unveiled to commemorate seven firefighters who lost their lives in a fire in Glasgow, Scotland, 50 years ago.

Andrew Quinn, Alistair Crofts, Iain Bermingham, Allan Finlay, William Hooper, Duncan McMillan, and James Rook were responding to a warehouse fire on Kilbirnie Street. They were all killed after a ceiling collapsed while trying to rescue James Rook, who was trapped.

It was one of the highest losses of life for the UK fire and rescue service at a single incident in peacetime.

The plaque is part of a national Red Plaque Scheme run by the Fire Brigades Union and funded through the Firefighters 100 Lottery, aiming to commemorate firefighters who have lost their lives in the line of duty.

The unveiling is taking place at the site of the fire on Kilbirnie Street today, Sunday 28 August, three days after the 50 year anniversary of the incident, beginning at 1:30pm. Members of the public wishing to attend are welcome.

Ben Selby (FBU Vice President), Colin Brown (FBU Executive Council Member for Scotland), Ross Haggart (Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Chief Officer) and Bailie Norman MacLeod (Glasgow City Council) will speak at the unveiling and pay tribute to the sacrifice of the seven firefighters who died.

Seona Hart, FBU Scotland Regional Treasurer, said:

“This incident was a tragedy which had a huge impact on firefighters and the community locally. The plaque will help us all remember the huge sacrifice these firefighters made keeping the public safe.”

“Firefighters put their lives on the line, and their selfless work to protect others deserves to be remembered. The Red Plaque Scheme plays an important role for the loved ones of firefighters who have died in the line of duty, so that their sacrifices are not forgotten, as well as sharing their stories with the community.”

The Red Plaque Scheme is fully funded by proceeds from the weekly Firefighters 100 Lottery which has been able to create several Plaques each year since it began in 2017. Over time, as supporters of the Lottery continue to grow, more Red Plaques can be placed at the heart of communities affected by firefighter fatalities. More information on the Red Plaque Scheme can be found at: www.firefighters100lottery.co.uk

The firemen killed on 25 August 1972 were:

  • Divisional Officer Andrew Quinn, 47, South Division, Glasgow Fire Service
  • Leading Fireman Alistair Crofts, 31, Pollok Fire Station, Glasgow Fire Service
  • Fireman Iain Bermingham, 29, South Fire Station, Glasgow Fire Service
  • Fireman Allan Finlay, 20, South Fire Station, Glasgow Fire Service
  • Fireman William Hooper, 44, North West Fire Station, Glasgow Fire Service
  • Fireman Duncan McMillan, 25, South Fire Station, Glasgow Fire Service
  • Fireman James Rook, 29, South Fire Station, Glasgow Fire Service

The names of those lost was added to the eastern side of the memorial to the firefighters lost in the Cheapside Street whisky bond fire, standing on the eastern side of the upper section of the Glasgow Necropolis.

The memorial to those lost in the Kilbirnie Street Fire, Glasgow Necropolis by Stephen Dickson via Wikipedia

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