THE Government is to wait for the cause of the last calamitous fire at the Mackintosh Building, before it considers whether to launch a Public Inquiry into the wider context of the twin fires of 2014 and 2018.

This is perhaps wise, as it does not pre-empt the most crucial episode in the aftermath of the blaze, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service report.

After that, ministers will need to consider whether the expense of a Public Inquiry is justified to probe the wider picture. The MSPs of the Culture Committee - who in only a handful of sessions unearthed a series of issues and details which we, the public, may not otherwise have known about or considered - clearly believe one is in order.

If it is widened beyond the GSA, and looks at the way all nationally important heritage buildings are kept safe, the role and powers of Historic Environment Scotland, it could be a deep and meaningful exercise for the future of Scotland’s built heritage.

Another cogent reason for an inquiry is the complexity of some of the technical arguments and counter-arguments aired in the Committee sessions. A judicial inquiry with expert technical support might be able to find a clearer path through the thicket of existing fire regulations and theories, for example: whether there is indeed a kind of mist system that could have been installed in the Mackintosh Building whilst it was being renovated.

The Culture Committee's work on this has been a good example of how parliamentary committees should work: insistently probing and poking those in power, as well as relevant experts, and finding issues and details of a subject that otherwise may have not come to light.

It was also enlightening to see the response of the management of the GSA, led by chair Muriel Gray, to the questions posed by the MSPs. Ms Gray can never be accused of lacking vigour in defending the GSA's actions.

I understand there is great anger at Ministerial level over the 2018 fire, in particular, and this might also act as an impetus to an Inquiry. Also, the broader canvass that it could investigate - broader than, say, the Edinburgh Tram Inquiry, as noted by Joan McAlpine, the convener - could potentially be fruitful. The cost, however, may be offputting to a Government with a limited purse.

The report, whilst finding fault with the management of the GSA, does not call for heads to roll, or for changes at board level. That, Ross Greer MSP said, is outwith its remit. He did, however, yesterday call for a "change in culture" in how the GSA addresses both its local community, and the wider Mackintosh world.

The key question remains: What caused the fire? We don't know.

A distinguished fire expert I spoke to last week said both arson (a tell tale sign would be fires begun in multiple locations) and accident (a slow-burning electrical fire, for example, that took up to six hours to become a major blaze) are still in the frame. It is also possible the SFRS may not be able to pinpoint a definitive cause.

The emphasis the GSA placed, yesterday, on Kier Construction’s legal responsibility for the safety of the building site is perhaps telling.