The fire service has paid tribute to a watch manager who was killed in a fatal crash close to his Wiltshire home.

Mark Hillier started his career in 1995 and worked with Dorset and Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service as well as the Surrey service over the years.

The firefighter, in his 40s, was killed in a crash close to his home in Pewsey on Thursday night (October 13) when his Suzuki Grand Vitara collided with a BMW X3 travelling in the opposite direction. The driver of the BMW escaped without injury.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Mark Hillier joined the service in 1995.Mark Hillier joined the service in 1995. (Image: Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service)

DWFRS CFO Ben Ansell released a statement on Friday morning.

It read: “It is with great shock and sadness that I am confirming, on behalf of his family, the sudden passing of one of our colleagues.

“Watch manager Mark Hillier passed away last night following a road traffic collision near his home in Pewsey. 

“I know that I speak on behalf of the entire Service when I say that we are devastated by this news.

“Our thoughts and deepest condolences go out to his family, friends, colleagues, and loved ones at this extremely difficult time.

“Mark joined Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service in October 1995 as an on-call firefighter at Pewsey fire station, where he became watch manager.

“Together with his on-call role, Mark also worked as a wholetime firefighter with Surrey Fire and Rescue Service for nine years, before transferring back to Dorset & Wiltshire, within wholetime, in May 2022, where he worked as a watch manager at Salisbury fire station.

“He was recently temporarily promoted to station manager for South West Wiltshire.

“Mark was recognised in 2021 with a Making a Difference award for his outstanding work and commitment to organising the ‘laptop for kids’ initiative.

“In remembrance and as a mark of respect, our Union flags (Service standard at SHQ) are to be flown at half-mast, at all workplaces that have them, from now until 8am on Tuesday, October 17 (the day after Pewsey’s weekly drill night), when they will return to full mast.”

The rural road was closed overnight and on Friday morning as police carried out their investigation.

Confirming the fatality, a police spokesperson said: "His next of kin has been informed and our thoughts are with them at this difficult time – they are being supported by specialist-trained family liaison officers."

An appeal has also been made for any potential witnesses to come forward. 

The spokesperson added: "We would urge anyone who witnessed the collision, or anyone who may have dash cam footage, to contact the serious collision investigation team on 01225 694597 and quote log number 267 of October 12.

"Alternatively, email the team at"