Cameron House fire: Two guests named

Two guests killed in a fire at one of Scotland's most prestigious hotels have been named as a couple from London.

Richard Dyson and Simon Midgley

Simon Midgley and Richard Dyson were staying at Cameron House, a five-star resort on the banks of Loch Lomond, when firefighters were called out at 6.40am on Monday.

The cause of the fire is not yet known and a major investigation into what caused the tragedy is underway.

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Police have yet to formally confirm the identities of the deceased but relatives took to social media to pay tribute to the men.

Cameron House has been extensively damaged in the blaze. Picture: Wattie Cheung

Midgley was a travel writer who freelanced for the London Evening Standard while Dyson worked in TV production.

Midgley’s sister Nicky hailed the couple as “amazing beautiful-hearted soulmates”. She wrote on Facebook: “It’s with a heavy heart I write this but this dreadful tragedy has taken two amazing beautiful hearted soul mates from me my heartbroken Mum and brother today.

“Reading all your lovely kind words we are grateful.

“Thank you to all those who bravely made the effort to save them.”

Cameron House has been extensively damaged in the blaze. Picture: Wattie Cheung

Three other people, a family of two adults and a child, were taken to hospital in Glasgow but have since been discharged.

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More than 70 firefighters were involved in fighting the blaze on the banks of Loch Lomond on Monday and seven units were still in attendance this morning.

In a statement, Cameron House director Andy Roger praised the “very swift actions of the emergency services”.

He said: “Everyone associated with Cameron House Hotel is still coming to terms with the events of yesterday and we are all hugely conscious that two people tragically lost their lives in the fire.

“Their families and friends are foremost in our thoughts as we co-operate fully with the investigation teams to try to establish the circumstances surrounding this terrible incident.

“The emergency services were on the scene long into the night and I cannot praise their efforts highly enough. They are true heroes. The firemen bringing out a couple and their young child by ladder from a second-floor room was a heart-stopping moment for all those who witnessed it.

“We’re also enormously grateful for the many, many offers of practical support and good wishes from the UK hospitality industry and also from the local community, which has rallied around to help. It’s been a humbling experience, but we are a small, tight-knit community on Loch Lomond and a response like that is typical of our many friends and neighbours.”

The hotel has made arrangements for the majority of its guests to travel home or continue with their breaks.

Mr Roger also paid tribute to the staff at the hotel who he said had shown “an enormous degree of care and teamwork throughout the last two days”.

Cameron House is owned by US investment firm KSL Capital Partners. The company reportedly paid around £70m for the 132-room property in 2015.

The property was first opened to the public as a wildlife park in 1972 when in the ownership of the Smollett family, who lived on the estate for three centuries.

It was sold for redevelopment as a hotel in 1986.