THE foundation established by one of Glasgow’s most successful businessmen has donated nearly half a million towards the revamp of the fire-hit Glasgow School of Art.

Born in the Gorbals in 1897, Sir Isaac Wolfson made his fortune in the mail order industry through the firm Great Universal Stores.

The Wolfson Foundation – a charity set up in his honour – has revealed that £450,000 will be awarded to the Glasgow School of Art Campus Appeal which aims to raise £32m in a bid to redevelop the famous Mackintosh Building which was partially destroyed by a fire in 2014.

The Wolfson Foundation celebrated its 60th anniversary last year. Its figurehead Sir Isaac Wolfson was awarded the Freedom of Glasgow in 1971 and died in 1991, aged 93.

It is the largest made by the foundation to a non-science project in Scotland in the last five years.

Paul Ramsbottom, chief executive of the Wolfson Foundation, said: “The Mackintosh Building is internationally renowned as a masterpiece of 20th century architecture at the heart of the Glasgow School of Art.

“We were impressed not only by the bravery, ambition and energy with which the school has responded to the traumatic events of May 2014, but also by the sensitivity with which this restoration has been conceived – not in isolation, but as part of a wider strategic vision for the school’s future.

“We are delighted to be supporting this important regeneration project, and helping to revitalise an outstanding building in the city of our founder’s birth.”

Work has begun on rebuilding the Mackintosh Building, with its notable Mackintosh Library being restored to its original designs.