Wife seeks information from husband's colleagues in mesothelioma battle

PUBLISHED: 13:18 28 February 2013 | UPDATED: 13:18 28 February 2013

Brian Copping

Brian Copping

Archant

THE widow of a former apprentice engineer from Haddenham, who worked in various buildings in Cambridge and Marshalls Airport, is appealing to her husband's former colleagues to come forward with information after he died of an asbestos-related disease.

Grandfather Brian Copping died of mesothelioma in July last year aged 65, less than a month after being diagnosed with the disease. Mesothelioma is a cancer in the lining of the lungs caused by inhaling asbestos dust.

He left behind his wife of 39 years Marion who has now instructed asbestos experts at law firm Irwin Mitchell to help investigate whether his former employers were responsible for his illness.

She is calling for Brian’s former colleagues at TR Freeman & Son, a heating company, to get in touch as they may hold vital information about the working practices at the various sites Brian was contracted to work at.

Brian worked as an apprentice heating and plumbing engineer for T R Freeman in 1962 and 1963, working on a number of sites including Marshall’s airport and various buildings in Cambridge.

Rosemary Giles, an asbestos illness expert at Irwin Mitchell’s London office representing Marion, said: “Brian told Marion he remembered working alongside men at various sites who were mixing asbestos powder into a paste and using it to insulate pipes.

“He remembered it created large amounts of dust and because he was given no protective clothing to wear he couldn’t help but inhale it.

“We would now like to hear from Brian’s former colleagues as they may have additional information about the presence of asbestos and working conditions that could help demonstrate that the practices at T R Freeman were unsafe.

His widow Marion, aged 59, said: “When we were told Brian’s diagnosis we were shocked but we had no idea it would take him so quickly. We had no time to come to terms with it.

“Over the years, Brian told me how remembered breathing in asbestos dust on various jobs when he worked for T R Freeman in Cambridge and I’m hoping his former colleagues will get in touch as they may have extra information that could help to prove that T R Freeman were responsible for his illness.”

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