Train death
mystery solved
after 23 years

A man who was killed after being struck by a train in London 23 years ago has been identified as a missing Scot.

Derek Burns was identified using advanced DNA techniques not available when he died.

The 20-year-old, from West Calder, West Lothian, was hit by a train in West Hampstead in March 1989.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

His father, Derek Burns Snr, said he was “relieved” his son had been found, adding the discovery would allow the family “to at last put our minds at peace”.

The death was not suspicious, with a coroner recording an open verdict at the time. But police were unable to identify the body and he was buried in the Islington and Camden cemetery in London.

Recent enquiries by the British Transport Police established that on the day he died Mr Burns had visited his girlfriend at her home near to West Hampstead station before discovering she was ending their relationship.

Mr Burns had been reported missing to Lothian and Borders Police the day before his death and was never seen again after visiting his girlfriend.