Appeal for help for grandfather who died after asbestos exposure at engineering firm

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The daughter and family of Frederick Perkin from Torquay, Devon, who died from a devastating asbestos-related disease, are appealing for help from his former colleagues.

The devoted father and grandfather, aged 86 years, died from mesothelioma, an aggressive, incurable cancer linked to past exposure to deadly asbestos dust particles.

Frederick lived in Stockport until 2013 when, due to his deteriorating health, he moved to Torquay in Devon to be closer to his daughter, Susan Szabo.

Frederick began suffering from breathlessness which affected his mobility and after undergoing tests at hospital, it was confirmed he was suffering from an asbestos-related illness.  Initially it was thought that he was suffering from asbestosis however, following his death it was confirmed that he in fact had mesothelioma.

In the 1940s, Frederick was an apprentice at SH Heywood & Co Limited, a crane manufacturer. He worked there from 1943 to 1947 at the firm’s premises at Reddish in Stockport and was responsible for making brake linings and shaping them to relevant sizes to be fitted on to the cranes.

In the 1960s, Frederick worked at Mirrlees National Limited, a firm which manufactured diesel engines in the Stockport area.  He was employed there from 1963 to 1964.

His daughter, Susan is investigating his past work at S H Heywood & Co Limited and Mirrlees National Limited and with help from specialist asbestos disease solicitors, Novum Law is appealing for anyone who worked at S H Heywood & Co Limited during the 1940s or Mirrlees International Limited in the 1960s to come forward with any information they have about his working conditions and how he was exposed to asbestos.

Susan said: “The family have been left absolutely devastated by my father’s illness and loss.  Before he became ill, dad enjoyed a very active lifestyle and loved spending time outdoors.  He was a keen fisherman and enjoyed green bowling but had to give this up due to the breathlessness caused by the disease.  Dad loved to travel abroad for his holidays but again, due to his disease he was not able to in more recent years.

“We hope that anyone who remembers working with dad at S H Heywood & Co or Mirrlees National gets in touch with any information, no matter how small.”

Andrew Walker, a specialist asbestos disease solicitor from Novum Law who is assisting Susan and her family with their search for justice, said: “Frederick’s family are understandably very shocked and upset they have lost him to an asbestos-related disease.

“Mesothelioma is a dreadful illness which causes significant suffering for its victims and their families. Thousands of people die each year as a result of just going about their everyday lives and working to make a living.”

“We are appealing to anyone who worked for S H Heywood & Co Limited at their Stockport site in the 1940s or Mirrlees International Limited during the 1960s that can provide information about the presence of asbestos either at the premises or on the production lines and how Frederick would have come into contact with asbestos.”

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