Daughter Appeals For Information On South Shields, Wallsend And Sunderland Firms Following Dad’s Mesothelioma Death
The daughter of a former turner is appealing to her dad’s former workmates for help following his death from asbestos-related cancer.
Vincent Dolphin, 90, from South Shields died last September, after being diagnosed with mesothelioma, a cancer of the lining of the lungs often associated with exposure to asbestos decades previously.
Following his death, his daughter Eleanor Dart, 58, also from South Shields, instructed asbestos-related disease specialists at Irwin Mitchell to investigate her father’s illness and where his exposure to asbestos could have occurred.
Eleanor has now joined with the legal team to appeal to any of her dad’s former workmates to come forward with information on the working conditions he encountered during his working life.
They are particularly keen to hear from anyone who worked at aerospace manufacturer Ford & Co (South Shields) Limited based in South Shields, shipbuilder Swan Hunter Wigham Richardson based in Wallsend and a Sunderland-based aerospace firm, Bristol Siddley Engines Limited.
Expert Opinion“Vincent was in good health prior to his mesothelioma diagnosis, which came like a bolt from the blue for the family.
“Sadly we work with many families devastated by the consequences of asbestos exposure with Vincent’s death the latest reminder of the terrible legacy this material has created across the region.
“Understandably Vincent’s family have a number of concerns about how he was exposed to asbestos and we’re determined to support Eleanor as she seeks answers concerning her dad’s death.
“As part of our investigations we’d be grateful to hear from anyone who worked with Vincent at any of these companies. Any new information, no matter how small, could be a big help in giving Eleanor and the family some closure and the answers they deserve.” Emma Bell - Senior Associate Solicitor
Vincent began working as an apprentice at Ford & Co on Commercial Road in South Shields in 1945 after leaving school at 14.
Eleanor remembers her dad saying they would have “eaten” dust from boards that were cut up in the workshop.
From 1952 to 1954, Vincent took a break from work to carry out national service with the Durham Light Infantry. He specialised in guns and teaching others about their correct use and while in the Army, also discovered a talent for boxing.
On his return, Vincent re-joined Ford & Co from 1954 to 1957. As he could turn his hand to anything, he carried out a few other jobs before being employed by Swan Hunter in 1963, where it is believed that he worked as a borer.
From 1964 to 1965, Vincent moved over to work at Bristol Siddley as a borer.
Vincent retired aged 65 in 1996.
Following his retirement, Vincent lived a full and active life. He enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren.
Vincent first started to notice symptoms in April 2021 and following an appointment with his GP, he was referred for tests. He was diagnosed with mesothelioma on 7 September 2021. Vincent died, surrounded by his family on 13 September 2021.
Eleanor said: “Dad’s mesothelioma diagnosis came as a real shock. He had often spoken with family and friends of working with what he believed was asbestos but we never imagined it would cost him his life.
“He was so fit and well despite his age, so to see him suffer in those final days was a terrible experience and an ordeal Dad and the family did not deserve.
“Dad was keen to look into his asbestos exposure but the disease progressed too fast to make that possible. Given he was denied the opportunity in his life; we’re keen to seek the truth in his memory.
“If anyone out there has any information, we’d really appreciate hearing from them. It would mean a lot and help us seek the answers dad was so keen to discover.”
Anyone with information that could help Eleanor, is asked to contact Stephanie Wilson on 0191 434 0731 or by email at Stephanie.Wilson2@IrwinMitchell.com