IT has stood at the heart of the city for more than a century acting as a testament to its designer’s genius, regularly drawing visitors from across the world to marvel at his working masterpiece.

But preparations have been finalised to start dismantling the world-renowned Charles Rennie Mackintosh designed Glasgow School of Art (GSA).

Structural engineers David Narro Associates and the contractor, Reigart, have prepared plans for the work that will need to be undertaken on the Mackintosh Building.

Plans have been shared with Glasgow City Council Building Control and Historic Environment Scotland.

Bosses for the GSA said work had been carried out over the weekend to assess the condition of the Mackintosh building, with further drone footage collected.

HeraldScotland:

Final preparation work for the dismantling of the elements of the building that have been deemed dangerous begin today. The main crane has been relocated to the corner of Sauchiehall Street and Dalhousie Street, and a second crane is expected to join it tomorrow.

The work to begin dismantling the south façade will start as soon as possible following approval of the methodology by Glasgow City Council Building Control. Work is needed following a devastating fire that ripped through the building – known as the Mack – on June 15.

For more than a century this majestic building which sits on a hill above Sauchiehall Street has been the beating heart of Glasgow’s cultural life.

It survived two world wars and one almost catastrophic fire four years ago.

Now, large sections of the Mackintosh building will be “dismantled” starting today following a second inferno two weeks ago, with fears it will never be rebuilt with the bill estimated to be as high as £200 million.

No-one could have predicted the turn of events which led to the almost-renovated building being destroyed in a fire, with new pictures yesterday revealing the full extent of the damage.

It was late on a Friday night when the fire was spotted by a passing policeman. Within an hour, it had spread like wildfire with the flames carrying over to the adjacent O2 ABC where the roof soon caved in Today, there is both physical and mental turmoil.

People have been unable to return to their homes in the area around Garnethill and Sauchiehall Street since the devastating blaze. Businesses have been locked out, with owners and staff facing penury.

But council bosses have condemned people who breach the GSA cordon as “deeply stupid”.

HeraldScotland:

The words come as locals claim to still be seeing people climbing the fence – despite warnings the Mackintosh building is at risk of imminent collapse. A member of Gartnethill Community Council told how one man brazenly walked up to the fence mid-afternoon and tried to pull it down.

Other locals said they saw men climb the fence in the early hours of both Saturday and Sunday.

Ian Khan, of the community council, said he had to chase away a man who tried to enter the cordon on Sunday at around 4pm. He said: “We had a meeting on Sunday afternoon and then walked around to the front of the Mackintosh building to take a look. There was a man walking up Renfrew Street with headphones in. He walked right up and started trying to pull away the fence.

“I said to him, ‘What are you doing?’ and he said, ‘I’m just going in.’ “We told him he couldn’t do that but he ignored us and went in anyway.

“The cordon around the art school is not good enough.”

The blaze ravaged the Mackintosh building on June 15, as well as spreading to the O2 ABC venue and Campus nightclub.

There have previously been arrests after individuals tried to breach the safety cordon put up in the wake of the fire.

Art school bosses have said the site is extremely dangerous with brick work at risk of collapse.

A council spokesman said: “The exclusion zone exists for one reason – to protect life and limb. Anyone entering the area, other than a trained and accredited expert, is not only putting their life at risk but also deeply stupid.”

Meanwhile, council leader Susan Aitken has said it is likely to be months, rather than weeks, before residents evacuated from their homes by the fire can return.

She said council bosses are in contact with the Association of British Insurers to smooth out issues for the now homeless residents.

This week there will be a clinic hosted by legal firm Harper Macleod to provide information to businesses on certain insurance and legal issues.