Former Ceiling Fitter Supporting World Cancer Day Reveals Life-Changing Impact Of Disease
A former ceiling tile fitter from Harrogate diagnosed with asbestos-related cancer has spoken out on how his “life has changed dramatically” after lawyers secured a settlement regarding his illness.
Bob McBratney lives with mesothelioma, a terminal cancer of the lining of the lungs most commonly associated with exposure to asbestos often decades previously.
Following his diagnosis, Bob, 65, of Copgrove, instructed asbestos-related disease experts at Irwin Mitchell to investigate his illness and help him access specialist treatment and care he requires.
Bob’s legal team successfully secured him a settlement from Lendlease, the successor company to Bovis Construction, after Bob worked on sites run by them as a self-employed ceiling tile fitter in the 1970s. The funding has meant that Bob has been able to access private immunotherapy and chemotherapy treatment since last September and that funding for future treatment remains in place.
Bob is now marking World Cancer Day by speaking out on the impact mesothelioma has had on him and his family to help raise awareness of asbestos cancer.
Expert Opinion“The past couple of years have been incredibly difficult for Bob but he remains positive. We’re pleased to have settled his case, allowing him to access the specialist treatment he needs now and will need in the future while living with mesothelioma.
Asbestos has posed a real danger in many workplaces for many years, and through our work, we sadly see many people affected by this type of cancer. World Cancer Day is a great way of raising awareness of the disease and how it impacts those affected.”
Nicola Handley - Senior Associate Solicitor
Prior to his diagnosis, Bob worked as magician and property manager.
In September 2018, his best friend was diagnosed with mesothelioma after working alongside Bob as a ceiling tile fitter in the 1970s.
Around nine months later, Bob began suffering from breathlessness and, after undergoing tests, he was diagnosed with mesothelioma in September 2019.
Bob, who lives with his wife Joanne, 51, and son Henry, 20, said: “My life has changed dramatically in the last couple of years. It was a real shock to find out my friend had asbestos cancer, but then a year later I was being given the same devastating news.
“I’ve tried to stay as active as possible since my diagnosis, and I took part in a charity cycling event last summer and regularly go walking with an Active for Cancer group in Harrogate.
“While there’s nothing I can do to change what I’m going through, Joanne and Henry have been a huge support. I’m also very grateful for the settlement which has allowed me to have vital treatment, without which my condition would undoubtedly deteriorate.
“I hope that by sharing my story, it will help others in a similar situation to me and make people aware of the support available to those with asbestos cancer.”
World Cancer Day is on 4 February and is held annually to raise awareness of cancer and encourage its prevention, detection and treatment.