Appeal to Local Community To Help Solve Middlesex Mum’s Mesothelioma Mystery
A family from Middlesex, who believe living close to a local factory led to their mum’s death from asbestos-related cancer, are appealing for the public’s help in establishing the facts.
Enid Audrey Rutty was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a cancer caused by exposure to asbestos in 2017. Prior to her death, Enid instructed Irwin Mitchell to investigate how she was exposed to the hazardous material, but died aged 86 on 2 April 2018 before she could see justice done.
Enid’s family is continuing their mum’s search for answers and on the second anniversary of her death, have joined lawyers to appeal for help in discovering the truth about Enid’s asbestos exposure.
With no clues from Enid’s work history, son Michael and daughter, Jenny are convinced the much-loved wife and mother of two was exposed to asbestos living near the Cape Factory in Uxbridge, West London. The family remain desperate to trace anyone who may have worked there.
In 1995, Irwin Mitchell helped June Hancock secure a landmark victory in the first case brought by a mesothelioma victim who had not worked with asbestos. June grew up near an asbestos factory and her legal team successfully argued that owners should be held responsible for the exposure suffered by local residents close to the site.
Emma Guy, a specialist asbestos-related disease lawyer at Irwin Mitchell, said: “Two years on, Enid’s family remain devastated by her death. They know how much the search for the truth mattered to their mum and continue to seek the closure only answers can give.
“We are determined to help Enid’s family and hope an appeal will jog someone’s memory, as any detail, however small, could prove vital to the investigation.”
Born in 1932, Enid left school in 1947 and as an office worker throughout her career she did not recall ever encountering asbestos in her working life. In 1947 Enid had an office job in Axon Town, before working in the Mambre Garton Hammersmith office from 1948 to 1953.
From 1953-1956, Enid worked in the British Airways timetables office before marrying James Gable in 1957, when she moved into the West London home she lived in until she died.
The family home was close to the Cape Factory in Iver Lane, Cowley, Uxbridge and Enid’s son Michael remembers the dust that collected on window ledges when he was eight in 1970.
The family regularly visited the park near the factory, (now Cowley Hall Recreation Ground) and Michael and Jenny attended Cape Christmas parties with their mum in the factory canteen.
Enid felt she, her family and neighbours were exposed to asbestos during this period and that the ‘dust’ she cleaned from her home was in fact asbestos fibres blowing from the factory.
Enid’s daughter Jenny said: “Mum had a cough since 2004 and while we were all concerned, she put the symptoms and tiredness down to age. None of us could believe it when she was diagnosed with mesothelioma or that the disease would take our mum from us so quickly.
“How mum was exposed to asbestos was a mystery until we remembered that white dust and the penny dropped. We think Cape Factory was the source, but need the public’s help to be sure.
“With mum gone, we don’t have much to go on. Michael and I remember Bill Saunders who lived behind us. He worked at the factory and arranged for us to go to the Cape Christmas parties.
“If anyone in the local community has any information that could help us, it would be a big help. It would give us answers and enable mum to rest in peace.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact Emma Guy at Irwin Mitchell on 0207 421 3913 or by email at Emma.Guy@IrwinMitchell.com or Taler Kelly on 0203 040 3432 or by email at Taler.Kelly@IrwinMitchell.com