Hundreds of North West families will receive settlements over the next few months from the notorious asbestos manufacturer Turner & Newall (T&N), which had factories in Rochdale, Widnes and Trafford Park.

One asbestos sufferer, who wishes to remain anonymous, has received one of the first compensation payments in the region after years of legal red tape and wrangling.

He was put in touch with lawyers Thompsons Solicitors by his union, Unite (Amicus section).

The man, now aged 85, who is suffering from asbestosis was employed as a supervisor by T&N and worked with asbestos every day.

He said: “I am delighted that I have received this payment after all those years waiting. I worked for 30 years for Turner and Newall and I was never told about the dangers – no-one was. Now I find it difficult to breath and cannot walk very far due to my condition.”

All claims against the company, which provided employment for thousands of families in the Northern regions, were frozen in 2001 after T&N and it’s parent company Federal Mogul went into administration.

Since then claimants and their families have been waiting for Administrators to reach agreement with Federal Mogul’s creditors and insurers.

Diana Fos, regional head of asbestos claims at Thompsons Solicitors in Liverpool and Manchester, said: “We have been engaged in one of the longest running and most difficult battles to obtain compensation for people who are suffering or have died from asbestos-related disease. I am glad that for many of them the struggle is now over or nearing an end.

“It was a matter of principle for us to stand by the victims and see this through from start to finish.”

Tony Whitston from Greater Manchester Asbestos Victims Support Group said: “Hundreds of former T&N workers have waited more than six years to receive compensation. Sadly many have died during the delay. Now a procedure is in place to pay compensation to victims and their families.