A MUSICIAN whose home was lost in a devastating fire has spoken of his relief after his beloved pet was rescued from the badly damaged building.

And Pete MacDonald said he has also been reduced to tears by the kindness and generosity of a fundraiser set up to help him back on his feet.

Pete was forced to flee from the blaze on Kenmure Street - the second in the community in six months - and leave Frida the hedgehog behind.

But, incredibly, building control staff from Glasgow City Council found the African pygmy safe and sound the following day.

Pete said: "There was a lot to be worried about but Frida was very upfront in my thinking.

"She's a prickly customer at the best of times, you couldn't grab her and run out of a building.

"It all happened so suddenly I just had time to grab a pair of shoes and run out.

"To stand outside and see the amount of fire I thought, 'That's it for her.'"

On April 1, Pete had just come back from a walk in the neighbourhood when he heard shouting and banging in the close.

Passing police officers had been alerted to flames at the roof of the building and worked fast to evacuate the residents.

Pete said: "You hear the word 'fire' and you get out the building. None of us knew there was anything wrong, which shows how quickly they got us out.

"When we ran out it was a case of everything appeared to go incredibly slowly. Seconds felt like hours.

"We could see the fire right up on the roof and there was a cherry picker up there from the fire brigade spraying water into the building but you could still see the fire spreading.

"It was horrifying seeing all the flames travelling across the roof."

The building is part of Albert Cross, a historic part of Pollokshields, and across the road from a second corner of the cross, which was completely destroyed by fire five months ago.

Pete, who plays with Glasgow band Randolph's Leap, said: "We had already been traumatised by what happened over the road so this feels like history repeating itself.

"The devastation has taken its toll on the community. Albert Cross was a real hub of the community and it's never been the same since the fire ripped the heart out of it.

"To see it happen to another building is very hard."

Residents in the building and the tenement property next door have been displaced while the building is made safe.

The Glasgow Times told how pharmacist Mohammed Adill Sheikh's Pollokshields Pharmacy was destroyed by the fire and he is looking to relocate to portacabins to keep serving the local community.

Pregnant mum Lucie Bradley also spoke to us about the devastation of losing her home in the blaze also.

But for Pete, the way the community has rallied round is a bright spot with, in particular, local group Pollokshields Trust working to support residents.

He is also grateful for Frida's safe return.

Pete added: "Frida being safe was a real silver lining in what was a pretty terrible few days - it would give anyone a wee lift.

"I've since had an email from the building control guy who rescued the hedgehog and he was very pleased to know Frida was doing well and eating her dinner that night.

"It must be a really horrible job to have to go through these buildings after they have been on fire so I'm glad this was something nice for him - and I've offered to buy him a good bottle of whisky."

Friends have set up a crowdfunder to help Pete and the response has been overwhelming.

He said: "My friends Lloyd Meredith, who runs Olive Grove Records, and Gillian Fleetwood were chatting back and forth about it and Lloyd was determined to get it set up.

"I was a bit hesitant at first but they talked me round and then the total kept rising.

"I wasn't able to look at it because it was too emotional and I would start blubbing. Everyone was leaving lovely messages, everyone was just being so wonderful and supportive."

The fundraiser - www.gofundme.com/f/pete-macdonald - has generated nearly £12,000 with donations coming from friends, strangers and well known names on the Glasgow music scene.

Pete said: "I'm a bit of a softy and it was like the end of It's A Wonderful Life when James Stewart's character feels the full impact of everything that's happened to him.

"There were some pretty potent emotions. It's been really beautiful and I am so grateful."