Tributes for "little blond wonder" (4) who died in brewery accident

Sad: Oliver Scullion with his dad Owen
Sad: Oliver Scullion with his dad Owen

The family of a young boy killed in an accident at a brewery in Lisburn have described him as a "little blonde wonder".

Oliver Scullion, described as a "force of nature" by family friend and councillor Pat Catney, died in an accident at the Hilden Brewery in Lisburn just outside Belfast. 

The 4-year-old's father, who is the manager at the brewery, was also injured in the accident.

Oliver was the grandson of Seamus and Ann Scullion, who set up the Hilden Brewery operation in 1981. Its website said the independent microbrewery was the oldest of its kind on the island of Ireland.

A family statement released yesterday said: "The Scullion-Hanna family is deeply upset by the death of a family member in an accident at the Hilden brewery today.

"The family would like to request privacy at this very difficult time."

SDLP councillor Pat Catney, who had known the little boy his whole life, said he was distraught.

A shocked Mr Catney told the Belfast Telegraph: "The family are devastated. It's beyond grief itself.

"This is an indescribably tragic accident - it is difficult to find the words to convey just how painful this news is.

"Oliver was a force of nature - this little blond four-year-old wonder who enchanted everyone who met him.

"He was part of the life here at the brewery, and I know that the staff are also devastated at his death.

"All I can do now is help his mum, dad and siblings in their time of need. They will be forever in my thoughts and prayers."

A spokeswoman for the Health and Safety Executive in Northern Ireland (HSENI) said: "HSENI has been notified of the death of a young child at a commercial premises in the Lisburn area and is investigating the circumstances.

"We are unable to comment further at this stage except to offer our deepest sympathy to the family."

Alliance councillor Stephen Martin offered his deepest sympathies to the family. 

"This is a deeply tragic event. The Scullions are well-respected members of our community and words cannot express the sadness we all feel on the passing of young Oliver.

"I was at the brewery a few weeks ago and, as always, it was clear the family are the driving force behind the success it has become. To lose a child is something no one should ever have to endure."

A PSNI spokesman said police had been in attendance at the sudden death of a child at the location and that relevant health and safety authorities have been informed. 

"The Health & Safety Executive has been informed," he added. "There are no further details at this time."