Lawyers acting for a former toolmaker in Surrey who is now suffering from a work induced asbestos condition are in a desperate attempt to trace his former co-workers.

William Croft, a toolmaker formerly of Orchard Way, Addlestone, Surrey has been diagnosed with Pleural Thickening, a disease arising from exposure to asbestos during his employment with Delon Tools and Longs Foundry both of Gogmore Lane, Chertsey, Surrey in the 1960s. The company and foundry belonged to a Mr Longleather, now deceased.

Linda Millband from Thompsons Solicitors, a nationwide firm which specialises in asbestos related diseases comments: “Extensive searches have failed to locate the insurers of the foundry and factory; we need to track them down so we can progress the compensation claim for William Croft. It’s tragic that so many claims are unsuccessful due to the fact that the insurers for dissolved companies are so difficult to trace.”

Asbestos-related diseases will cause 10,000 deaths a year by 2010 and will be the biggest industrial killer of all time. For somebody like Mr Croft, compensation is crucial as his condition could well worsen in the future leaving him severely disabled.

Mr Croft explains: “While working at Delon Tools and Longs Foundry I was exposed to large amounts of asbestos dust which used to blow from the foundry into the factory. It was like working in a snowstorm. I’ve now been relocated to Bourne in Lincolnshire because of my breathing difficulties.”

Could anyone who has worked for the company or has information regarding the insurers please contact Linda Millband on 0115 9897256.