Loved Ones And Lawyers Seek Information On His Work History
The siblings of a former mechanical fitter from Newcastle have launched an emotional plea for answers to determine how he died from asbestos-related cancer.
John Taylor helped maintain machinery which would send miners underground to power the country. He also worked on the gas streams for Northern Gas Board in Swalwell.
However, he died aged 73 around nine months after he was diagnosed with mesothelioma – a terminal form of lung cancer associated with exposure to asbestos, often decades previously.
Following John’s death in March 2018, his brother Bryon, instructed specialist asbestos-related disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate his death and determine whether it may be linked to his work history.
As part of their ongoing investigations, the legal experts are now seeking information regarding whether John, of Lemington, may have been exposed to asbestos during his time working for the National Coal Board from 1959 to 1967 and when he was employed by the Northern Gas Board from 1972 to 1973.
Expert Opinion“This is sadly yet another case where the consequences of exposure to asbestos have seemingly emerged many years after the contact with the material is thought to have taken place.
“While time may have moved on from John’s death life for his family has not. They remain devastated by their loss and continue to hold many questions regarding the illness which ultimately took John’s life.
“With this in mind, we would be grateful to anyone who may recall working with John and could shed light on the conditions he would have faced while employed by these organisations. Any information could prove vital.” Roger Maddocks - Partner
John had a brother Bryon, age 82, and three sisters, Mildred, Margaret and June. John was never married, but he was an uncle to 18 nieces and nephews. His hobbies included gardening, shopping and he also played chess with his nephews. He also liked to visit his neighbours for a cup of tea.
During his time at the National Coal Board, John undertook a five-year apprenticeship as a mechanical engineer and was based at North Walbottle, Seaton Delaval and Ashington collieries before going on to work as a mechanical fitter at North Walbottle Colliery between 1964 and 1967.
His role meant he would undertake maintenance and repair work on the steam generation plant which powered the cages which sent miners underground. Other tasks included maintaining the coal washing plant, winches as well as giant boilers.
From 1972 to about 1973, John spent a period as a mechanical fitter for the Northern Gas Board, overhauling the gas streams, at a plant in the Swalwell and Dunston area. He recalled removing and replacing asbestos jointing which was used on pipework.
Bryon said: “John was such a happy and easy going person who loved nothing better than watching the TV, especially the sports. He especially liked helping people, for example he used to help his next door neighbour by buying his paper, clearing the snow from his path and putting his bins out. He also used to help mend his neighbour’s children’s bikes and football.
“It remains hard to think about how mesothelioma affected him in the final months of his life. It took a real toll on him.
“It may be more than two years since he died but all his family still miss him. While nothing will change what has happened, we feel it is important to honour his memory by getting answers regarding the illness which led to his death.
“Any information regarding where he could have been exposed to asbestos would be hugely appreciated. We are keen to speak to anyone who knows about the use of asbestos in the mines and also, who has information about the gas streams plant in the Swalwell area.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Megan Gascoigne at Irwin Mitchell’s Newcastle office on 0191 434 0708 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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