The family of a Polish refugee who worked at a Newport Steelworks and went on to die from an asbestos related disease is calling for help for his former colleagues.

Karol Leon Reichel, known as Leon by his friends, died in October 2008, aged 91. A post mortem found he was suffering from asbestosis, a disease caused by exposure to asbestos dust.

Leon had immigrated to Britain in the 1950s and settled in Cardiff. He worked as a fitter at Llanwern Steelworks in Newport from 1962 until the early 1990s.

His daughter, June Reichel, instructed asbestos claims experts Thompsons Solicitors to investigate a claim for compensation earlier this year.

The family are asking any of Leon’s former colleagues who may remember working with him to get in touch with Thompsons to help build a better picture of his employment at the steelworks and how he came into contact with asbestos in his working environment.

Contact Thompsons Solicitors with any information

Mrs Reichel said: “When my dad died he hadn’t yet been diagnosed with asbestosis but we had an idea he may be suffering from a disease caused by his work.

“As a child he told me a lot about his working life. We had no idea that years later we would be going down this path. I remember my dad used to give some of his colleagues a lift to work. We’ve now lost touch with them but we would urge them or anyone who remembers working with my dad to get in touch.”

Amanda Jones from Thompsons Solicitors said: “We have acted on behalf of a number of men who have gone on to suffer from an asbestos related disease after working at Llanwern Steelworks but would be very interested to speak to anyone who remembers working with Mr Reichel.

“I would urge anyone who may be able to help to come forward.”

Anyone who remembers working with Leon can contact Amanda Jones on 08000 224 224 or by email on: