London's Burning Wiki

There are number of continuity errors seen in London's Burning when stated facts are later contradicted as well as other production errors.

Repeated Take

In the pilot, Blue Watch are called to a attend to a burning shed in a garden which has been caused by Vaseline failing to extinguish a smoking rubbish pile whilst moonlighting as a gardener. At the beginning of the scene, Station Officer Tate is heard asking the owners if they think it may have been caused by children messing about; at the end of the scene, he is then heard asking them exactly the same question again.

Malcolm's wife

During a gathering of the firefighter's wives in the pilot episode, there is a woman called Betty Cross which implies she is Malcolm's wife. When London's Burning returned as a show for series 1, Malcolm is unmarried.

Liver Salts and George

Liver Salts was a former member of Blue Watch who left before the start of the pilot and was replaced by Josie Ingham. When he returned for a visit in series 1, he reunited with many other firefighters including George Green who was not only well acquainted with him but also recognised his ex-wife Donna upon seeing her and knew all about the breakdown of his marriage — despite the fact that George had only become a member of Blue Watch between the pilot and series 1 after Liver Salts had left, so how they knew each other is unknown when they never served alongside each other in the watch.

The Quigleys' and Hallams' children

In Ding Dong Merrily, Series 2, Series 3 and Series 6, Sicknote and his wife Jean are stated to have children. For instance, Jean discusses with Nancy Tate what will happen to the kids if she turns pro with Dominic. Sicknote also mentions that his children will be upset by the closure of the city farm. But when Jean falls pregnant in Series 11, Sicknote mentions that they had previously never had children. The Hallams also had children in early series; their young daughter Lillian was seen when John tried to remove a stray tarpaulin from a neighbour's roof. However they were not seen or referred to in later episodes, although it is never explicitly mentioned that they do not exist.*

Wrong Fireman
  1. In the fourth episode of Series 2, there is a shot of Vaseline sliding down the fireman’s pole from the top, but the very next shot shows Bayleaf landing at the bottom.
  2. In the second episode of Series 4, when the watch are called to stop a horse from sinking into a muddy pond, there is a brief shot of someone in a station officer’s white helmet inside one of the fire engines as it leaves the station — despite the fact that the new station officer, Nick Georgiadis, has not yet arrived at Blackwall until the next episode.

Kate's friends

When Kate Stevens is introduced in series 3, she shares a flat with her friends Mary (played by Deirdre Harrison) and Sue (Kiran Hocking). However in subsequent episodes the characters were inexplicably swapped. Mary was now portrayed by Kiran Hocking and Sue by Deirdre Harrison.*

* These errors are partially explained by a fire at the Jacob Street studios in 1991, in which London's Burning production notes were lost.

Jaffa Parrish's real name

While visiting the station to complain about Colin being left on probation in Series 4, his mum calls Jaffa "Lionel", which Bayleaf and the watch mockingly repeat. However after Jaffa is hospitalised with burns in Series 7, a doctor refers to him as "Oliver Parrish".

Colin's uniform

Billy lends out an old uniform he found in a store room to mates of his, who use it to masquerade as firemen and sell dodgy smoke detectors. Nick later states that the uniform Billy took belonged to Colin, yet the uniform they use has Sub Officer markings despite Colin never progressing beyond the rank of fireman.

Wrong Character, Wrong Name
  • After Jaffa and Colin were sold a dodgy window cleaning round by Technique, Kevin asks Colin, "have you and Technique caught up with Jaffa yet?"
  • In series 11 at the explosion at Cannon Wharf while carrying the unaccounted man out Dan says "let's try and be optimistic Sicknote", but he is with Jack, while Sicknote has just gone up the ladder (this may not be an error, as it was established that Dan was still learning the names of Blue Watch and may have mistaken him).
Re-used footage
  • In the series 10 episode when a car lot is on fire, several clips are 'borrowed' from an earlier series 6 shout at the huge petrol station fire. These include a Renault car (reg B649 CLY) exploding and shots of burning petrol on the ground.
  • The flashover in the old factory's ventilation duct (where the pop video is being shot) borrows a shot of the flashover in the laser arcade shout from a series 7 episode. The arcade's overhead walkway and the icon of the woman holding the laser gun are visible.
Newspaper article

After the appliance crash involving Bayleaf, ACO Bulstrode reads a newspaper cutting about the incident. Upon closer examination, the article is just the same lines repeated over and over.

Leaking water tank

When the appliance crashes and flips over in the Christmas episode, water is seen spilling out of the top of the appliance. In reality the tank would be mounted at the bottom of the appliance. However, this is a deliberate error as the tank was moved to the top to make the vehicle more unstable and easier to tip over.

Stuntmen and actors

In a number of episodes, regular stunt men can be seen portraying people involved in incidents. In later series they show up more and more, such as when a man climbs a chimney due for demolition, he also appears in earlier series, for example at Tate's retirement party in Series 3.

CGI flames

The shout where the paedophile's car gets petrol bombed was done using CGI. The flames are not consistent between shots and there is no smoke whatsoever.

At a science lab fire, started when a teacher knocks over a bunsen burner onto flammable liquids, parts of the workbench instantly catch fire that were nowhere near the liquids.

Wrong fire engines

At London Fire Stations that have both a Pump & Pump Ladder, the Pump doesn't have a 13.5M Ladder, however from Series 3-12 & 14 Blackwalls Pump does have a 13.5M ladder

Wrong Uniform

When Nick Georgiadis was promoted to ADO in Series 11, his helmet markings were still that of a Station Officer.

Mick Callaghan wore the shirt and helmet of an Acting Station Officer, but is never represented as such in episodes.

DVD covers

There are a number of errors on DVD packaging. These include:

One actor, two roles

Several actors appear in the series as different characters.

One character, two actors
Actor/actress credited by wrong name
Deja vu
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