Former Hostel Manager Died From Mesothelioma
A Cambridge hospice has welcomed a funding boost after lawyers successfully recovered costs related to care provided to a former hostel manager before he died from asbestos cancer.
Peter Blake, from Weston Colville, died from mesothelioma aged 64. A terminal cancer of the lining of the lungs, mesothelioma is most commonly associated with asbestos exposure often decades previously.
Prior to his death, Peter instructed specialist asbestos-related lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate his illness and whether it could have been linked to his employment. After he died, his widow Jenny continued the investigation alongside his legal team.
The lawyers have now secured a settlement against the owner of the building where he volunteered. Peter was a volunteer managing a hostel in London and training volunteers between 1985 and 1989.
In addition, a previous landmark judgment secured by Irwin Mitchell also meant that the couple’s lawyers could recover costs related to the care that Peter received from Arthur Rank Hospice in Cambridge. As a result, a donation of £1900 has been presented to the hospice.
Expert Opinion“Hospices carry out such vital work by supporting people in their last days of life, as well as their loved ones.
After Peter’s death, the staff continued to support Jenny, for which she is incredibly grateful. We’re therefore delighted to have been able to recover the costs of Peter’s care to help allow the hospice to carry on with its amazing work and ensure future patients are given the same quality of care Peter received.
It’s also an opportunity for Jenny to say thank you to the hospice.”
Samantha Shaw - Senior Associate
During his time volunteering, Peter managed the day-to-day running of a hostel for gap year students alongside Jenny. The hostel was part of a large Victoria building with an old boiler room and lagged pipework running throughout the building. It was believed that this contained asbestos which Peter was exposed to.
In August 2015, he started to suffer pain in his side and became breathless. He underwent a series of tests and was diagnosed with mesothelioma in October that year.
His condition deteriorated and he died at home on 7 March 2016, with support from the Arthur Rank Hospice At Home service.
At the time of his death, Peter and Jenny had been married for 33 years.
Jenny said: ““Peter was my soul mate and my life hasn’t been the same since I lost him.
“When he was diagnosed with asbestos cancer, we were both shocked and devastated. I was therefore so grateful to the staff at Arthur Rank Hospice for the care and support they provided to both of us, not only towards the end of Peter’s life but also afterwards. I’m not sure I would have got through it without them.
“While I will never get over losing Peter, I’m pleased that the settlement has allowed me to give something back to those who made a difference. I hope it will help the hospice continue to provide a fantastic level of care to future patients.”
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