Historic inn destroyed by blaze

Firefighters at the scene of the fire in Craigrothie. Pic George McLuskie.
Firefighters at the scene of the fire in Craigrothie. Pic George McLuskie.

Investigations are continuing into the cause of a blaze which all but destroyed an 18th century coaching inn in rural north east Fife yesterday (Sunday).

Around 40 firefighters from Cupar, St Andrews, Methil, Glenrothes, Kirkcaldy and Dunfermline were involved in fighting the fire at the Kingarroch Inn in Main Street, Craigrothie.

The alarm was raised around 4.30pm and it is thought the fire had begun in an outbuilding to the rear of the main building.

On arrival at the scene firefighters discovered that the fire had spread to the restaurant and bar as well as moving upstairs and into the roof space.

After attempting to bring the blaze under control from the inside, they had to withdraw due to worsening conditions and concerns about the integrity of the roof.

The fire was then fought externally using a fire engine with an aerial ladder platform.

Station manager Andy Bennett said: “This was a serious fire requiring a quick and effective response from firefighters.

“Firefighters wearing full breathing apparatus brought the flames under control using two high-pressure main water jets, before continuing to search the two-storey building for signs of hidden fire spread.

“Work then began to check for potential hot spots using a thermal imaging camera and dampening down the affected areas.”

Firefighters remained on the scene until after 11.30pm yesterday and investigations began this morning.

The owners of the restaurant, who also own Meldrums in Ceres, are said to be devastated by the incident.

For a full report see this Friday’s Fife Herald.