1 Pump Retained.




<1982                               Dedicated Fire Shed

1982                                 Garages, Balmoral Estate, BALMORAL.                Photo



1982 to ?

Sub Officer Alexander Donald (Sandy)

? to 1990

Sub Officer Jim Westwood

1990 to 2005

Sub Officer Lindsay Masson

2005 to

Watch Manager Lindsay Masson (Rank to Role)





1982 JSA67 Dennis F8/Dennis WrT



Ford D1013/HCB Angus




Ford D1617/Angloco




Dodge G13c/Carmichael


2001 G315MSA Dodge G13/Mountain Range WrL
2003 SV03CWK MAN 14-225 4x4/Emergency One WrT



1981 to 2003

Grampian Fire Brigade

2003 to

Grampian Fire and Rescue Service (name change only)



Before the Volunteer Unit was formed by Grampian Fire Brigade the Estate had a fire fighting unit which consisted of a Manually pulled Escape Ladder and a Manually pulled Trailer Pump which were kept in a dedicated fire shed. There were also Hose Reels in boxes at various places throughout the estate.

In 1982 the F8 was kept in one of the garages, then when they got a Ford the garage wasn't wide enough so two garages were put together to make a bay for the appliance. In the late nineties a third garage was added to the station to give a bay and an office.

Unit formed 1981.

New Volunteer Unit at Balmoral operational March 1982. (Annual Report 1982)

New Volunteer Unit 1980 (Annual Report year ended 31/12/1980)

Fire board agreed Unit to be converted to Retained. 20/5/2000

Unit upgraded from Volunteer to Retained 6th September 2000.

Balmoral had a call sign of 85 in Grampian Fire and Rescue Service, this was changed to R39, the new National Call Sign, when the Control at Mounthooly closed on 8/11/2016.


Grampian Fire Brigade Welcomes
Balmoral Volunteer Fire Unit

Firemaster D.R. Close, O.B.E., carried out his last official duty before retrial by welcoming the new Volunteer Fire Unit at Balmoral Castle into Grampian Fire Brigade. Firemaster Close said that the Unit would not only be providing initial fire cover for the Estate, but would be able to be used as additional backup in the event of a fire in the surrounding district.
One of the main reasons for the Unit was the wintry conditions experienced in the area which added to the time the Fire Appliances from Ballater and Braemar would take to arrive at an incident.
The Unit consists of a Dennis Fire Appliance and eleven Volunteer Personnel all of whom work on the Estate.
May I take this opportunity to extend to the Balmoral Unit a warm welcome on behalf of all of Grampian Fire Brigade personnel, and earnestly hope that in the not too distant future to be featuring them as active members of the various sport and recreation sections.
(Northern Light No. 7 edition, Page 15)


Establishment 1982





1 Water Tender Ladder

1 Sub Officer ?  Volunteer Leader?



2 Leading Firefighters ?



9 Firefighters


Establishment 2006





1 Water Tender Ladder

1 Sub Officer



2 Leading Firefighters



9 Firefighters


Royal visit marks Balmoral Fire Station’s new status 

<PHOTO> Rachel Masson, 5, presents a posy to the Queen as her father, sub-officer Lindsay Masson, and Firemaster John Williams look on.
The Queen made a special visit to Balmoral Fire Station yesterday to acknowledge its change in status from using volunteer to retained firemen.
The event was also held to commemorate the partnership between Grampian Fire Brigade and Balmoral Estate.
The Queen, who was accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh, arrived in a chauffeur-driven Range Rover and spent about 30 minutes at the station, wearing a tartan dress and red jacket.
Members of the Grampian Fire Board and their wives were presented and Her Majesty was given a tour of the station’s appliance room.
She also met members of the fire crew, who serve the estate, and later unveiled a plaque at an informal reception. Afterwards she was presented with a figurine and a posy of flowers from the daughters of one of the firemen.
Balmoral Station, which initially provsided fire cover to the castle and estate, has operated as a volunteer unit for nine years.
Because of a number of regulatory changes, the unit recently began responding to incidents in the wider community of Crathie as well as providing support to retained units in Braemar and Ballater.
Because of local demographic changes, it has been necessary to supplement the unit by recruiting personnel from outwith the estate. That was achieved through the support of people in Crathie and Ballater and by a partnership with the Royal Lochnagar Distillery.
Nine firemen work at Balmoral Station, four of whom are estate workers. They respond to about 50 minor incidents a year such as grass, heath and forest fires as well as road accidents in the estate and its surrounding area.
Speaking after the event, Grampian Firemaster John Williams, who showed the Queen round the station, said: “I think it went very well. Obviously we are pleased that the Queen has found the time to come and visit the facility.
“The brigade has been working here for a number of years and members of the Royal Family are familiar with the firefighters and the station.”
(Press and Journal, Thursday,
September 7, 2000. K&D edition. News/3.)



<PHOTO> The Balmoral Unit greet the Queen at Balmoral Fire Station. (Photo by Aberdeen City Council)
The change in status from volunteer to retained firefighters of the Balmoral Fire Unit has been royally recognised.
The partnership between the Grampian Fire Brigade and the Balmoral Estate has been celebrated with the unveiling, by the Queen, of a plaque at the fire station within the Balmoral Estate.
The Fire Board and have also recognised and approved this transition.
Balmoral Fire Station has operated as a volunteer unit since 1982, initially providing fire cover to the castle and the estate. Due to a number of changes, further development of the partnership has resulted in an agreement whereby the unit could respond to incidents off the estate into the wider community of Crathie and also provide support to the retained units at Braemar and Ballater.
The unit, which has been predominantly crewed by Balmoral Estate workers, have now started recruiting personnel from out of the estate. This has been achieved through the support of the people of Crathie and Ballater and by a partnership with the Royal Lochnagar Distillery.
Grampian Fire Brigade and Balmoral Estate view this transition very much as a partnership arrangement, looking to the future to enhance the fire cover provisions and rescue services for the estate, Crathie and the surrounding area.
(Fire News Oct/Nov 2000. Page 11.)




If you know of any mistakes in this or have any additional information please let me know.


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