Former Builder Diagnosed With Asbestos-Related Cancer Appeals For Ex Colleagues To Help Investigation

Industrial Illness Specialists At Law Firm Irwin Mitchell Working With Ex-Construction Worker in Battle for Justice


A former builder coming to terms with the devastating news he is suffering from the asbestos-related cancer mesothelioma, has joined forces with expert industrial disease lawyers to appeal for his ex-colleagues to help investigate how he was exposed to the deadly dust.

Winston Ford, of Hoddeston in Hertfordshire, was diagnosed with mesothelioma in October 2012 after being referred to hospital by his GP when suffering from breathlessness, chest pain and back ache.

Industrial illness experts at Irwin Mitchell representing the 72-year-old believe his illness was caused by exposure to asbestos during the 1960s and 1970s whilst working as a labourer on various construction sites in Hertfordshire.

In particular, they believe Winston may have come into contact with the deadly dust during his time working for Reema Construction Ltd from 1965 until 1967.

While working for Reema, Winston worked as a labourer on the Round Hills estate in Waltham Abbey and although he did not work directly with asbestos, he came into contact with it while working in close proximity to other tradesmen using asbestos-based products on site.

Winston, who has recently undergone a course of chemotherapy as part of his treatment for the incurable condition, is now working with lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to appeal for information from his former colleagues who may be able to confirm the presence of asbestos in his working environment on the site.

Winston said: “The way construction sites worked in the 1960s involved all sorts of different tradesman working on site at any one time and I believe that this was the case during my time with Reema. I was never warned about the presence of asbestos, nor was I provided with any safety equipment, but I think that I inhaled dust whilst working there and that it has had a devastating impact on my health.

“I first started feeling out of breath in August last year and when this developed into chest and back pain, I visited my local GP to find out what was causing it. When I found out I had mesothelioma, it was a bitter pill to swallow and a complete shock for me and my family.

“It is heart-breaking to know that asbestos exposure can lead to such a terrible and incurable disease later in life and the pain and breathlessness has really stripped away my quality of life and independence. I feel it is important to find out exactly how I was exposed to the dust and why more wasn’t done to prevent it happening.”

Rosemary Giles, a Partner and expert asbestos lawyer at Irwin Mitchell, is leading the case.

Expert Opinion
Winston’s mesothelioma diagnosis inevitably was a devastating blow to his family and quite rightly he is looking for answers about why he now has the illness.

“We’re keen to speak to anybody who worked with Winston during his career as a labourer at Reema Construction as we believe they may hold vital evidence about the presence of asbestos and the working conditions he faced.

“Companies have been well aware of the dangers of asbestos since as far back as the 1950s so there is no excuse for him not being protected from the material and nobody should suffer from such a serious illness as a result of their commitment to work and the grafting they put in for their employers.”
Rosemary Giles, Partner

Anyone who thinks they can help is asked to contact Rosemary Giles at Irwin Mitchell on 0370 1500 100 or email

Read more about Irwin Mitchell's expertise relating to mesothelioma claims.