When Mr S left school aged 15 in 1959 he took up a job at a plumbing, heating and ventilation company in Leyton, London, E10.  He stayed there for just over 2 years before taking up a job in the Post Office.


Plumbers mate


Mr S was initially employed as a plumber's mate.  The job included working with lengths of pre-formed insulating material.  These lengths came in different sizes in order to fit pipes of different bore.  He would cut the pre-formed material to length.  He would cut out segments of the material in order to take the insulation round a bend.  He cut this material with a hacksaw.  Once the lagging was fitted into place around the pipe work he would apply a coat of white insulating material which had the consistency of Plaster of Paris.  In all probability this lagging paste contained asbestos.


Mr S also did other jobs for this company which did not involve working with asbestos materials but he did sometimes use asbestos string or rope for caulking of cast iron pipe work. 

Mr S was not given any protective equipment nor was he given any warnings about the dangers of working with asbestos. 

After Mr S left the company in 1961.  He was never exposed to asbestos again.


During 2013 Mr S suffered episodes of breathlessness.  He felt generally unfit.  On one occasion he was simply sitting at the breakfast table when he passed out.  His partner called the ambulance.  He went to the A&E Department and was kept in hospital for a week.  Two weeks later he was told that he was suffering from mesothelioma.

Mr S contacted Andrew Morgan for advice in November 2014.

Andrew began enquiries and was able to identify the company that had employed Mr S even though this employer did not appear on the employment history that Andrew obtained from HM Revenue & Customs..  Mr S had copies of his letter of appointment and letter of recommendation, which were very helpful.


However, Andrew established that the company no longer existed and there were no prospects of obtaining compensation direct.  Fieldfisher had no trace of ever having pursued this company before and so Andrew asked the Employer's Liability Tracing Office (ELTO) to look for insurers but they could find none. 


Andrew advised that Mr S make a claim to the Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme (DMPS).  This application was successful and Mr S received the DMPS award of £128,548.

The DMPS award included £7,000 to go towards legal costs.  But Andrew had been particularly efficient in running the case and was able to limit his charges so that Mr S kept the balance.


Mr S was quoted to say:

"At a very difficult time they were there for us, they are compassionate and professional solicitors"

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