Heartbroken Widower Appeals For Information After Wife’s Asbestos Death

Expert Lawyers Looking For Secretary’s Former Colleagues In Walsall

17.06.2015

The widower of a former secretary who died from an asbestos-related cancer is appealing to his wife’s former colleagues to come forward to provide vital information about how she was exposed to the deadly dust in Walsall.

Anne Jones, from Norton Canes in Staffordshire was 72 when she died on 6 December 2012, after being diagnosed with mesothelioma, a cancer in the lining of the lungs, in April of that year.

Her husband David instructed specialist industrial disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell in Birmingham to battle for justice on Anne’s behalf, investigating where she was exposed to asbestos and whether more could have been done to prevent her contact with the dust.

Irwin Mitchell is calling for any of Anne’s former colleagues at Shelfield Secondary School on Broad Way in Pelsall, Walsall, where she worked as a secretary from 1969/70 to 1979/80, or St Matthew’s Mental Hospital, Burntwood, Walsall, where she worked as secretary to the Nursing Director, Mr McGovern, between 1979/80 and 1994/95, to get in touch.

Before she died, Anne recalled that there was asbestos present at the school, now Shelfield Community Academy, and substantial building works took place during her time there.

At St Matthew’s Hospital, Anne worked in a ground-floor office with large sash windows across from the boiler house, which contained the hospital’s coal-fired central heating that generated clouds of dirt and dust.  An asbestos survey undertaken at the Hospital in January 2009 showed that there were significant amounts of asbestos in the building.

Expert Opinion
“David and Susan only had a matter of months to spend with Anne, following the devastating news that she had terminal cancer caused by exposure to asbestos.

“The disease is normally associated with heavy industry, but we are increasingly seeing people who worked in schools or hospitals being diagnosed with the cancer due to being exposed to asbestos decades ago.

“We are very keen to hear from any of Anne’s colleagues at Shelfield Secondary School and St Matthew’s Hospital who can help with details of any works related to asbestos or who can confirm the presence of the deadly dust at either location. People may have vital information that could really help the Jones in their fight for justice.”
Iain Shoolbred, Associate

David, 75, said: “My daughter Susan and I were devastated to lose Anne so quickly after the doctors diagnosed her with mesothelioma. It was a real shock when we were told she had cancer in her lung and I remember Anne saying that ‘cancer’ was the worst word in the world to hear.

“Anne really fought her illness, enduring six chemotherapy sessions every three weeks and trying to live her life to the fullest during that time. However, she went rapidly downhill

“Susan and I had a horrendous time watching Anne lose her battle with cancer and we want to see justice done for her death. We hope anyone with any information that might help us will get in touch, as they could make a huge difference and help us achieve justice for Anne.”

Anyone who thinks they can help is asked to contact Iain Shoolbred at Irwin Mitchell on 0121 214 5446 or email iain.shoolbred@irwinmitchell.com