Major fire at Astley Ainslie hospital

73 patients were forced to evacuate from Astley Ainslie hospital when a fire raged through the building yesterday evening.

Fire crews received a call at 5.19pm, and seven appliances were sent from four stations across Edinburgh to tackle the blaze.

The fire service reported they were met with a well-developed blaze in a sub ward of the Balfour Pavilion, producing acrid, thick, black smoke.

The service took less than an hour to extinguish the blaze.

The hospital responded with contingency plans. Of the 73 patients evacuated, 43 had to be relocated elsewhere. Some were moved to other wards, while 22 were moved to the Corstorphine Hospital. No one was hurt.

The cause of the fire is now under investigation, and hospital authorities are evaluating the damage to buildings and equipment.

The Astley Ainslie Hospital specialises in the treatment of brain injuries, and cardiac and geriatric orthopedic rehabilitation.

Assessing the damage: The Astley Ainslie hospital today