Former Hull Royal Hotel Worker Appeals For Help After Mesothelioma Diagnosis

Asbestos-Related Disease Lawyers Investigating Exposure At Hotel

01.07.2016

A former Hull porter and housekeeper is speaking out ahead of Action Mesothelioma Day after instructing specialist asbestos-related disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate his time working at the Hull Royal Hotel after he was diagnosed with mesothelioma. 

 

Philip Hemsworth, aged 60, from Holderness Road in Hull was recently diagnosed with the disease, which is caused by exposure to asbestos, after suffering with shortness of breath.

 

He believes he may have been exposed to asbestos dust and fibres during his employment at the Hull Royal Hotel.

 

Many people will recall that the hotel was one of the oldest buildings in Hull and was built over 125 years ago and was opened by Queen Victoria who actually stayed in the Hotel.

 

Philip was employed from approximately 1986 to 1990 initially as a porter and later as a housekeeper and laundry man. He recalls spending a significant amount of time in the large basement area of the hotel and also recalls substantial refurbishment work being undertaken on a regular basis throughout the building.

 

He told his legal team he worked in the vicinity of asbestos lagged pipes which was a common use of fire insulation many years ago and being exposed to substantial quantities of dust and debris.

 

Regrettably a devastating fire in 1990 destroyed the Hull Royal Hotel and only a shell was left and specialist lawyers are therefore trying to establish the precise products and condition of the hotel before the fire and its refurbishment.

 

Philip is now speaking out ahead of Action Mesothelioma Day (1 July), which aims to raise awareness of the terminal disease and bring together victims, their families and support groups.

 

He is hoping his former colleagues, who also worked in the basement areas of the hotel while refurbishments were being undertaken, will come forward now to provide information about the conditions that they all had to work in. 

 

Nicola Handley, a specialist industrial disease lawyer at Irwin Mitchell’s Leeds office representing Philip, said:

 

Expert Opinion
“Mesothelioma is an aggressive and incurable cancer which causes so much distress for victims like Philip. Through our work we represent a large number of people who develop mesothelioma after exposure to asbestos decades ago.

“That’s why Action Mesothelioma Day is so important as it is vital people are aware of this disease and the impact it has on those unfortunate enough to have their lives affected by it.

“Many individuals were not made aware of the dangers of working in the vicinity of asbestos lagging that was in a poor state of repair and working in the vicinity of those carrying out constructions works that would involve the removal of asbestos materials.

“Sadly employers did not do enough to manage the risk of asbestos exposure even as late as in the 1980s when extensive legislation had already been passed. We are now appealing to any of Philip’s former colleagues who worked at the hotel to come forward and provide us with information in respect of his working conditions.”
Nicola Handley, Solicitor

 

Philip said: “I really do hope that former colleagues will read about my diagnosis and the investigation into how I came into contact with asbestos and come forward with the information I need to get the justice I feel I deserve.

 

“I’m extremely concerned about my future and what awaits me as my condition worsens and my health begins to deteriorate. Hopefully, people will come forward and help me in any way they can.”

 

Anyone with information on the presence of asbestos at the Hull Royal Hotel in the late 1980s or with information on the warnings provided to staff about the dangers of asbestos should contact Nicola Handley at Irwin Mitchell on 0113 220 6233 or email Nicola.Handley@IrwinMitchell.com.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, our expert mesothelioma solicitors could help you claim compensation. See our Asbestos-Related Disease Claims Guide for more information.