The wife of a Liverpool man who died following a five-year battle with an aggressive form of cancer has spoken of her family’s anguish after finding out it was caused by asbestos exposure at work.

Anthony Raynor was 71 when he died from mesothelioma, a fatal cancer caused by inhaling asbestos fibres. He was exposed to asbestos when he worked as a joiner for two Lancashire-based construction firms in the late 1960s and 1970s. As part of his job he would cut cement sheeting, which contained asbestos.

It wasn’t until 2014 that he started suffering from shortness of breath and difficulty sleeping, leading him to visit his GP. A series of tests later confirmed he had mesothelioma.

Mr Raynor battled with the disease for five years, during which time he had various treatments, including the immunotherapy drug, Keytruda. Sadly, he passed away in 2019.

Before his death, Mr Raynor turned to Thompsons Solicitors for legal guidance. The asbestos law firm helped secure interim payments to cover the cost of the immunotherapy, and subsequently a final settlement to support the family after his death.

His wife, Judith, said: “Watching my husband’s health slowly deteriorate was horrendous. He was an active man; a keen gardener and very house proud. As the cancer took hold, he couldn’t do any of these things and would be in almost constant pain.

“The interim payments provided us a lifeline and meant we could pay for expensive immunotherapy treatment, which we could have never afforded otherwise. While it didn’t cure him, it meant we could enjoy more time together.

“Without Thompsons’ expertise this wouldn’t have happened and for that, our family is eternally grateful.”

Lisa Gormley, the solicitor who supported the family, added: “Anthony is yet another example of a hard-working labourer who lost years – if not decades – of his life because employers failed to safeguard employees from asbestos exposure.

“The type of work Anthony was involved in meant he was breathing in asbestos fibres almost all day, every day. It was a ticking time-bomb that eventually reared its head later in his life.

“Our job is to not only support the families we represent to secure compensation, but, as much as possible, give them answers so they understand how and why their loved ones were taken away from them too soon. Unfortunately, with it only being a few months since the 20-year ban on asbestos use in the UK, we know it’s going to be a long time until stories like Anthony’s become a thing of the past.”