Walberton man dies from asbestos exposure

A Walberton man has died from being exposed to asbestos, an inquest heard.

Terry Aldridge died aged 72 on October 13 at St Wilfrid’s Hospice in Grosvenor Road, Chichester, from lung cancer.

Inquest

Inquest

The inquest on Tuesday, February 5, heard how Mr Aldridge had work for Hine Ltd and the London and Midland Steel Scaffolding Company as a scaffolder in the 60s and 70s.

He was exposed to the hazardous material while erecting scaffolding at jobs, including the boiler room of the Dorchester Hotel in Park Lane, Mayfair, London.

An avid windsurfer and skier, Mr Aldridge, from Yapton Lane, Walberton, began suffering from recurring chest infections a few years ago, the inquest heard.

In 2017, results of a biopsy at Worthing Hospital showed he had mesothelioma - a form of lung cancer commonly associated with the inhalation of asbestos dust particles.

His health declined, and he was admitted to St Wilfred’s on October 2 last year, passing away 11 days later.

Coroner Christopher Wilkinson said that the latency period for this type of cancer was around 30 years - which would correlate with his work as a scaffolder.

He concluded that Mr Aldridge died from an industrial disease.

He said: “Little did anyone know so many years ago what effect this particular material would have. Unfortunately, it is something that takes time and we won’t know for many years how many people were affected by it.”

He is survived by his wife Sheelagh, with whom he had three children.

Speaking at the inquest, she said: “I remember him coming home covered in dust. I just hope it hasn’t passed on to me or the children - they were very young at the time.

“We just didn’t know what it was in those days.”

Mr Wilkinson said: “I’m sorry you have lost your husband in this way and I extend my condolences to you.”