The Watson Street Fire 1948

1952 watson street blantyreDuring 1948, ten families were rendered homeless when fire ravaged through their Watson Street homes. Almost 40 people lost their homes and most of their possessions , being forced to stay temporarily after the fire in the YMCA. The fire had started early one morning at 12 Watson Street and destroyed the two storey building.

Temporary repairs were carried out at one end of the building to ensure the families adjacent were protected and could remain there. The fire was believed to have originated in the upper storey in the home of Mr and Mrs McNulty and their four children. Within half an hour the roof the building was on fire, as was the two shops on the lower floor, burning furiously.

Mrs McNulty’s cries for help caught the attention of her neighbours who raised the alarm. Householders made a vain attempt to put the fire out with buckets of water but were unsuccessful. Similar attempts were made to rescue possessions.

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