The family of a widower who died six days after being diagnosed with mesothelioma – an aggressive form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos – is appealing for his former work colleagues to come forward with information about his working conditions.

87-year-old George Fraser spent his entire working life employed as an electrician by Reeds Paper Mill in Kent. After leaving the army in 1947, George worked at the mill, now known as Aylesford Newsprint, until he retired in 1988.

Diagnosed with mesothelioma

George’s health deteriorated over a period of nine months before he was officially diagnosed with mesothelioma, an incurable cancer which affects the lining of the lungs, in November 2012. He died six days later.

After his death, Mr Fraser’s family instructed Thompsons Solicitors to investigate a claim for compensation.

Due to the sudden nature of their father’s death, George’s family and their solicitors are trying to trace his former colleagues to find out more information about how he came into contact with asbestos dust at the mill.

Worked particularly in the boiler house but also completed jobs all over the mill

As an electrician, George worked particularly in the boiler house but also completed jobs all over the mill. His family believe he would have come across asbestos in a number of forms, including lagging around pipework and around the boiler.

Mr Fraser’s daughter, Linda, said: “Dad’s health had been getting worse since February of last year and he had been in and out of hospital, but we weren’t prepared for him to be diagnosed with mesothelioma. After that, everything happened so quickly and we didn’t even get a chance to talk to him about how he could have been exposed to asbestos before he died.

“We’re hoping that people who worked with him will get in touch and help us put together why this happened. He worked at the mill his whole life, and I remember he had a number of apprentices during that time.

“If you have information which could help explain, please get in touch.”

Highly likely exposed to asbestos in many areas of the mill

Alison Fahy from Thompsons Solicitors added: “In his role of electrician, it is highly likely that George would have been exposed to asbestos in many areas of the mill. It is vital for his case that we are able to speak to his former colleagues to identify how George was exposed.

“We would urge anyone who worked with George at Reeds Paper Mill to contact us with information which could help.”

Anyone who can help can contact Alison Fahy on 08000 224 224 or by email on: