A beauty salon in St Albans that was destroyed by a fire earlier this year is preparing to re-launch after months of tears and hard work.

A blaze broke out in Pure Indulgence in Catherine Street in April, badly damaging the building’s roof.

Salon owner Nicky Heer, who was in the salon when the fire started, said: “It has been very emotionally draining.

“Financially it has been very hard because we missed out on the summer trade.

“Thankfully I have got really excellent staff and loyal customers who have stuck by me.

“I am an optimist so I always think that it could have been a lot worse. Nobody was hurt.”

Two weeks after the fire staff were allowed back into the building but many of the rooms were out of use and scaffolding covered the salon’s outside sign.

Repair work has now been completed and the salon, which will reopen under the new name Bonita, will re-launch on Monday, November 19.

Ms Heer said: “We wanted a fresh start.

“We are really excited and the customers are really happy.

“We are offering new services as well so hopefully the end of the year will be better.

“We want to build on it now and build a really thriving business.”

At the time of the fire the salon had been undergoing a refurbishment.

Ms Heer’s eldest daughter Kiran played a key part in getting everyone out of the building as the flames began to spread.

The 15-year-old had been taking her GCSEs at the time, and despite the stress and aftermath of the fire she managed to walk away with 7A*s and 3A grades.

Ms Heer said: “I was just so proud. I’m the proudest mum in the world.”

After the fire Kiran and her mother spoke to the Review about their shock that passersby had stood sniggering and taking videos on their mobile phones as they frantically tried to stop the fire.

Ms Heer has said that although some of the community has been supportive, some of their neighbours have not been as helpful.

She said: “They didn’t approach us to see if we were ok.

“We are a community at the end of the day.”