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Compensation for former Nottinghamshire joiner exposed to asbestos

A joiner who was exposed to asbestos while constructing poultry sheds was awarded compensation following his diagnosis with asbestosis.

Posted on 08 July 2024

John Burley, from Kirkby in Ashfield in Nottinghamshire, was employed as an apprentice and then as a joiner by Vic Hallam Ltd - a Langley Mill based company - in the 1960s and 70s, during which time he was heavily exposed to asbestos.

He was exposed when working at various sites around the UK on the construction of large poultry sheds which had asbestos corrugated roofs, as well as walls lined with asbestos boards.

John’s duties at work meant he had to saw asbestos sheets using both an electric saw and a hand saw. Handling, cutting and fitting these sheets meant he was exposed to substantial amounts of asbestos dust and fibres.

In around 2014 and 2015, John began to feel breathless when walking long distances so attended his GP. Following various lung function tests, he was told that he had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease - a lung condition that causes breathing difficulties.


John Burley
Picture of John Burley


After developing a cold in July 2019, John went to see his GP again and was referred to hospital due to crackling on his lungs. A CT scan and x-ray led to him being referred to Kingsmill Hospital in October 2020, where the doctors told him that he had fibrosis (scarring) in his lungs and diagnosed him with asbestosis aged 81.

Following this diagnosis, John instructed Leigh Day solicitors and was awarded provisional compensation. This meant that he received compensation and reserved the right to seek further compensation if his asbestosis progressed significantly, or he developed a malignant asbestos disease.

In August 2023, John passed away from unrelated causes.

Leigh Day partner Helen Ashton on the industrial disease team, who represented John, said:

“We were pleased to secure provisional compensation for John following the discovery of asbestosis in his lungs. It offered him immediate support as well as putting him in a position where, should his condition have progressed, or another asbestos-related disease been discovered, he would have been able to seek further compensation. It was deeply saddening to learn of John’s passing.” 

Helen Ashton
Asbestos and mesothelioma Asbestos claims Industrial disease

Helen Ashton

Leading Derbyshire, Yorkshire and East Midlands mesothelioma lawyer

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