Drama as La Laguna’s cultural jewel goes up in flames
Tenerife firefighters have been praised for their “magnificent work” in saving one of La Laguna’s most historic buildings, the Ateneo, which went up in flames at the weekend.
The cause of the blaze is being investigated but the damage is not as devas-tating as first thought.
Flames and thick black smoke were visible from all parts of the city last Friday but the main building was saved thanks to the swift action of the emergency services.
Nearly 180 works of art, representing over 75 per cent, were saved from the 20th century cultural building and all are being assessed for smoke and/or water damage as firemen had to use 10,000 litres to put out the fire.
Vice Minister of Culture of the Canary Islands Govern-ment, Juan Márquez said: “The Canary Islands Govern-ment will begin an analysis of the situation to see to what extent we can collaborate in the recovery of this emblem of our culture and of art and thought in the archipelago.”
The roof of the main building has been destroyed but the other parts of the structure remain intact.
Everyone involved in dealing with the emergency has been praised, including members of the public who helped to transfer the works of art.