The widow of a former works manager for Winterschladen & Co in Middlesbrough, who died after developing the asbestos-related disease mesothelioma, is urging former colleagues of her husband to contact Thompsons Solicitors if they have information to support a compensation claim

Charles Raymond Robinson, known commonly as Ray, died aged 87 as a result of the asbestos disease. He worked for Winterschladen & Co from 1949 until 1976, first as a stores clerk before becoming assistant works manager, and eventually manager at the firm’s factory on Lower Feversham Street in Middlesbrough.

"If you worked with Ray at Winterschladen & Co and have information about the factory’s conditions, or know someone that does, please contact Thompsons Solicitors. It could prove vital to supporting Jaqueline and her family as they come to terms with their loss."

Helen Jones
specialist asbestos solicitor at Thompsons Solicitors

Ray’s roles varied, but he would have to spend a significant amount of his day on the shop floor, working alongside colleagues on the production line and maintenance workers, who would be responsible for checking and repairing the boilers and pipework in the factory.

He began suffering from pain in his back and legs in September 2016. Months later he had a severe spell of breathlessness and was rushed to hospital, where doctors spotted fluid on his lungs. Ray’s health rapidly declined and he soon died, with a post-mortem examination revealing the cause was mesothelioma. 

His widow, Jaqueline, is now appealing to those who worked with Ray on the shop floor at the Lower Feversham Street factory to contact Thompsons Solicitors and assist her in making a claim for compensation. 

“Ray was always an active person ever since we married and retirement didn’t stop him – he would go out for long walks almost every day,” said Jaqueline. “When he first mentioned his back and leg pain we hoped that it was just a strained muscle, but within weeks it became obvious that it was far more serious. Suddenly he could barely stand and, before we could begin to comprehend what was happening, he had passed away. 

“Our children have been great in supporting me since Ray died, but we would all appreciate an understanding of what caused their dad to develop this horrendous disease. I hope someone who worked with him on the shop floor will be able to help with that understanding and provide us closure on the case.” 

Helen Jones, the solicitor representing the family, said: “Mesothelioma can be present for several years without any symptoms but, when they surface, the consequences can be as devastating, as they are rapid. The cause of Ray’s condition was not understood until his death, but we still don’t know how and when he was exposed to the asbestos that killed him. 

“If you worked with Ray at Winterschladen & Co and have information about the factory’s conditions, or know someone that does, please contact Thompsons Solicitors. It could prove vital to supporting Jaqueline and her family as they come to terms with their loss.” 

Anyone with information about the working conditions at Winterschladen & Co should contact Helen Jones at Thompsons Solicitors’ Newcastle office, on 0191 2690625.