A mother of three diagnosed with a fatal cancer, mesothelioma, is appealing for witnesses to come forward with information about working conditions of joiners at Manchester Council which she believes was responsible for exposing her to asbestos.

60 year old Vivienne Swain, from Rochdale, believes she contracted the disease as a result of exposure to asbestos dust when washing the work clothing of her former husband, Michael Anthony Power – known as Mick.

Mick was from Middleton and worked for Manchester City Council as a joiner between 1969 and 1977. He later worked for Rochdale Council, but sadly died in his early 40s of brain disease.

Vivienne was diagnosed with mesothelioma in August 2015, and recalls regularly coming into contact with asbestos from Mick’s work overalls. “I would shake the overalls before washing them and they would be heavy with dust – so much so that it would cover the kitchen floor, and I’d have to sweep it up. I believe these were asbestos fibres,” says Vivienne.  

Following her diagnosis, Vivienne contacted specialist asbestos disease solicitors Thompsons in Manchester to investigate her case. Vivienne believes she would have been in contact with asbestos between 1969 and 1977 whilst married to Mick Power. She is urging others who worked for Manchester City Council as joiners during that period, particularly those that may have known Mick Power, to come forward with information.

“I am determined to carry on in the face of this illness and I know that there are treatment therapies out there that can help to prolong my life. However, the Government payment scheme that exists for people with the disease doesn’t cover people like me who didn’t work with asbestos, and I’m unable to get immunotherapy treatment on the NHS.

“I urge anyone who worked for Manchester Council as joiners to come forward with any information about the conditions Mick would have worked in and the presence of asbestos – this could be vital in supporting my final hope of being able to fund the medical treatment I need,” continued Vivienne.

Steven Dickens, an asbestos disease specialist at Thompsons Solicitors said: “Vivienne’s case is an extraordinarily sad example of how asbestos disease ruins lives – she is the victim of secondary exposure to asbestos, and a tragic example of how this killer dust devastates individual lives and entire families.

“In particular we want to hear from anyone who worked for Manchester City Council between 1969 and 1977 as joiners and who came into contact with asbestos.”

Anyone with information about potential asbestos exposure with Manchester City Council as joiners between 1969-77 or anyone who worked with Mick Power during that period please contact Steven Dickens at Thompsons Solicitors on 0161 819 3571 or email.