Family of Firefighter Ewan Williamson is raising legal action for damages


The family of Edinburgh Firefighter Ewan Williamson, who tragically died in a blaze at the Balmoral Bar in the city’s Dalry Road on 12th July 2009, are raising an action for damages in the Court of Session.

Mr Williamson’s mother and sisters, Linda Williamson, Rachel Williamson and Rebecca Williamson, have launched the action against Ewan’s former employers, Lothian & Borders Fire & Rescue Board, because they believe that mistakes were made that night which cost Ewan his life and their questions about why things went wrong remain unanswered.

 Ewan Williamson died in a fire at Balmoral bar in 2009



Almost three years have passed since Ewan lost his life and we have waited patiently for the authorities to investigate what happened and either prosecute those they hold responsible or hold a Fatal Accident Inquiry into Ewan’s death.  Despite the passage of time, we still do not know all the facts or why Ewan died. 

“We had hoped and expected that after all this time and all the investigations carried out by the Health & Safety Executive, the police and an external Fire Brigade, that the Crown Office would have been able to take a decision on how to proceed.  As matters presently stand, however, we do not know if a decision has even been taken to prosecute anyone for Ewan’s death or if a Fatal Accident Inquiry is to be held.”

“The night we lost Ewan turned our lives upside down.The justice system is taking far too long and we simply cannot wait any longer.  Enough is enough.”

Roddy Robertson, Fire Brigade Union Executive Council Member for Scotland said:

“The Fire Brigades Union have supported the Williamson family throughout their ordeal.  We share their interest in what happened that night and why Ewan died.”



Lothian& Borders Fire & Rescue Service issued a statement:

“We note the decision of the Williamson family to raise an action for damages in the Court of Session in relation to the death of Ewan Williamson.

“Ewan’s death was a tragic event in the history of Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service. It affected everyone working within the organisation. We also witnessed firsthand the pain of Ewan’s family and his partner and did all that we could to support them through that exceptionally dark period in their lives.

“We understand that without answers to what happened on that fateful night their pain and anxiety continue. This is something that personnel from Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service, particularly those who responded to the fire at the Balmoral Bar on the 9 July 2007, live with too, on a daily basis.

“Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service has cooperated fully with the police investigation into Ewan’s death. It is of paramount importance to us that we understand the full circumstances of what happened the night that Ewan died.

“Our personnel have taken part in thousands of hours’ worth of interviews, with police, the Health and Safety Executive and to assist with our organisation’s own investigation into the circumstances of the incident.”