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Jamie Hailstone is a freelance journalist and author, who has also contributed to numerous national business titles including Utility Week, the Municipal Journal, Environment Journal and consumer titles such as Classic Rock.
January 10, 2019

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Family appeal for answers following asbestos-related death

The family of a Durham woman who died of asbestos-related cancer has joined forces with specialist lawyers Irwin Mitchell to appeal for answers regarding her death.

Tina Handley, who moved to Northallerton in 2004, died aged 64 in August 2018 just over a year after she was diagnosed with mesothelioma – a cancer of the lining of the lung which is most commonly associated with exposure to asbestos.

Following her death, her family instructed specialist asbestos-related disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell’s Newcastle office to investigate her illness and whether it was related to her work history.

Now, as part of their ongoing investigations, the legal experts are keen to gather more information regarding whether Tina may have been exposed to asbestos during her time as an office worker for Durham County Council in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

“Our initial research suggests there could have been asbestos in a host of locations within the County Hall office where Tina worked, including in wall panels, ceiling tiles, fire doors and notice boards,” said lawyer Emma Dumbleton.

“Sadly this is one of a growing number of cases which relate to asbestos exposure in public buildings such as council sites, hospitals and schools. While asbestos has often been linked to industrial settings, these types of issues are becoming more and more common.”

Former colleagues

The legal team at Irwin Mitchell are also keen to speak with any of Tina’s former colleagues from her time as an auxiliary nurse at Dryburn Hospital in the Gynaecology and ENT departments.

Tina worked at the hospital between 1992 and 1995, and the legal specialists believe that it is possible that she could have been exposed to the harmful asbestos dust and fibres during this time.

“We all loved her so much and are just desperate to get the answers we feel she deserved regarding her illness. We would be hugely grateful to anyone who may be able to help us,” her son Toby.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Emma Dumbleton at Irwin Mitchell’s Newcastle office on 0191 279 0105 or email [email protected].

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