The family of a Vicar who was exposed to asbestos when he was an apprentice with the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has received compensation from his former employer.

The Vicar from Oxfordshire was 77 when he died from asbestos related lung cancer, mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma is caused by exposure to asbestos. There is no known cure for the disease.

He was exposed to the dust when he was a graduate apprentice for the MoD working at the Royal Ordnance Factory at Puriton, near Bridgwater from 1958 to 1959.

The factory made bombs and armaments

The factory made bombs and armaments and was closed in 2008. The site is currently being demolished.

During his time at the factory he spent two weeks removing asbestos lagging from the factory’s boilers. This exposure was enough to cause the fatal cancer decades later.

He become ordained as a priest in the 1980s and continued his ministry until he retired in 2000.

He was diagnosed with mesothelioma in February 2012 after complaining about a persistent cough to his doctor. He sadly died just a few months later in June 2012.

He left behind his wife, two sons and four grandchildren.

Instructed asbestos compensation specialists Thompsons Solicitors

Before he died he instructed asbestos compensation specialists Thompsons Solicitors to investigate a claim. His wife continued his claim on his behalf.

Thompsons settled the claim for compensation after starting court proceedings.

His wife said: “It is difficult to believe that my husband developed mesothelioma through working with asbestos for just two weeks of his life. Unfortunately we know that it is likely that other people working at ROF Puriton at the time were probably exposed to asbestos as well.”

Eamonn McDonough from Thompsons Solicitors added: “I am pleased to have been able to support this family through this difficult time. The Vicar’s life was taken by industrial disease because his employer in the 1950’s failed to protect him from the dangers of asbestos which were well known at the time.

“ROF Puriton is currently being demolished but unfortunately its legacy is likely to continue long into the future with more former employees who worked with asbestos developing asbestos disease.”