EIGHT residents had to be evacuated from their flats when fire broke out in a building in Crieff's High Street in the early hours of Sunday morning.
More than 20 firefighters from Crieff, Comrie and Auchterarder were called out to battle the blaze, which started in a rear storage area of the Royal China takeaway.
The alarm was raised around 3.20am. When firefighters arrived they were faced with dense smoke generated by the severe flames and breathing apparatus had to be used by teams searching the building for possible casualties.
Tayside Fire and Rescue tackled the blaze from both the front and rear of the building, ensuring it was brought under control quickly and residents were able to return to their homes within a few hours.
However, the back shop of the Royal China has been completely destroyed.
Maranda Love summed up the feelings of many Crieff residents, saying: “I felt quite sad that another Crieff family-run business had suffered at the hands of another fire. It will take them a long time to fix the devastation caused. It’s another loss to Crieff High Street and another old building damaged and made into an eyesore.”
Investigations into the cause of the fire are ongoing.