Appeal For Information After Husband Diagnosed With Peritoneal Mesothelioma Following Death
The ‘devastated’ widow of a Bristol man who died of asbestos-related cancer has launched an emotional appeal for information regarding whether he was exposed to the material at work.
Roland Clapp died aged 71 in December without knowing he had peritoneal mesothelioma. It was only after his death that it emerged he had been suffering from the terminal form of cancer which affects the lining of the abdomen and is commonly linked to contact with asbestos, often decades previously.
Lawyers investigate peritoneal mesothelioma diagnosis
Following the news, his wife Brenda Clapp, 70, of Staple Hill, Bristol, instructed specialist asbestos-related disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate and help determine how he developed the illness.
Appeal for information on Bristol employers
As part of their ongoing investigations, the legal experts are keen to find out more about whether Roland, a keen Bristol City fan, could have been exposed to asbestos during his working life. As such, they would like to hear from anyone who worked with him at:
• Port of Bristol Authority in the late 1960s
• Robert Hobbs during the late 1960s and early 1970s
• The Board Mill factory from the mid-1970s
• Bristol Royal Infirmary (BRI) from approximately 2003 to 2020
Expert Opinion“Just months on from Roland’s death, Brenda and the rest of Roland’s family remain devastated by their loss. In particular it was also a great shock to learn that Roland had an asbestos-related disease, as this was something that even he didn’t know about.
“Mesothelioma itself is a relatively rare disease with around 2,700 cases in the UK each year, accounting for less than one per cent of all cancer cases. However, peritoneal mesothelioma is very rare and is thought to represent a maximum of 10 per cent of all mesothelioma cases.
“Roland’s death is another stark reminder of the terrible legacy that asbestos has created. Its use wasn’t just restricted to heavy industry but was widespread, including in public buildings.
“Understandably Brenda has so many questions about what has happened and we’re determined to help her obtain the answers she deserves. We’d be very grateful if anyone who worked with Roland could come forward. Any information could make a difference in helping Brenda.” Rebecca Buxton - Associate Solicitor
Roland Clapp's story
Roland’s first job was as a labourer for the Port of Bristol Authority in the 1960s. He initially worked at the tobacco bonded warehouse in Hotwells, before moving to the Port of Bristol. After that, he worked at Robert Hobbs as a general labourer making breeze blocks and cement. He was employed at the foundry in Whitehall and then moved to the cement plant at Backwell.
He was then a machine minder at the Board Mill factory and was there from the mid-1970s until its closure. He took up his final role as a porter at BRI in his early 50s and worked there for almost 20 years.
Wife Brenda issues appeal over husband's asbestos exposure
Brenda, a carer, said: “I met Roland through work in 2001 and he really was a really wonderful man. He was such a loving and caring husband and it still really hasn’t sunk in that he is no longer here.
“At no point before he died did we know Roland had cancer. He was still active and enjoying his retirement. He was a huge Bristol City fan and he was into football in big way. He also spent a lot of time with his step grandchildren who he picked up from school most days.
“We still had so many plans for the future. It’s been hard enough trying to come to terms with the fact that we’ll never get to spend more time together let alone the shock he had mesothelioma. It’s sad to think that he died without knowing about the condition.
“Nothing will change what has happened, but I just feel I deserve some answers. It would be fantastic if people could come forward and help us – it really would be massively appreciated.”
How you can help
Anyone with information is asked to contact Rebecca Buxton at Irwin Mitchell on 0117 926 1574 or email email@example.com