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Appeal to former Harland Engineering workers and Liverpool schools workers

The family of a former Harland Engineering worker turned teacher are appealing for help from anyone who remembers working with him.

Posted on 11 November 2021

Joe Reilly died aged 74 from the asbestos related cancer mesothelioma, in 2019.

His widow and daughter, Margaret Reilly and Joanne Drew believe Joe came into contact with asbestos at work and are appealing for help from anyone who worked alongside him at Harland Engineering in London or schools in Liverpool including St Gregory’s, St Anne’s, Sacred Heart, St Cyril’s and Our Lady of Good Help.

Joe, who was born in Glasgow, worked for Harland Engineering Limited in Baker Street, London between 1965 - 1966. The company was involved in carrying out electrical engineering and Joe’s family believe he worked around colleagues who were involved in using electrical wire that was coated with asbestos insulation.

The asbestos team at law firm Leigh Day, who represent Margaret and Joanna, would like to speak to anybody who previously worked at Harland Engineering Limited, particularly if they recall working with Joe or have any information about the work that was carried out with electrical wire.

Joe moved into the teaching profession in 1972 and worked as a teacher in the Liverpool area, where he met and married Margaret.

The Leigh Day team would be interested to hear from any of Joe’s former teaching colleagues who may recall if any asbestos materials were present in the schools listed above, particularly if they can recall building work going on at any time.

Joe Reilly

Following his retirement, Joe moved back to Scotland, and died at home in Perth.

Margaret Reilly said:

“When Joe was diagnosed, it was as though the world had stopped turning. This insidious disease is caused by asbestos lying in the lung for many years. Joe was so fit, his heart was strong and he grabbed any treatment and trial that was offered to him. They were brutal, but he treated them like part of a training schedule with amazing resolve. We miss him so much. A life cut short.”

Kevin Johnson, specialist asbestos solicitor and partner at Leigh Day said:

“We are appealing for any of Joe Reilly’s former work mates to come forward. Mesothelioma is a dreadful disease which is sadly becoming far too common amongst the teaching profession. We would be interested to speak to any of his former colleagues from schools in the Liverpool area. We are also interested to hear from anybody who previously worked at Harland Engineering Company Limited in London and whether they can provide further details about the work that they carried out.”

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Kevin Johnson
Asbestos and mesothelioma

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