Search

Dagenham man, 97, with mesothelioma appeals to ex-workmates to help possible compensation bid

PUBLISHED: 13:13 18 December 2017 | UPDATED: 18:33 19 December 2017

Gerald Palmer is terminally ill with mesothelioma. Picture: Stuart Hughes

Gerald Palmer is terminally ill with mesothelioma. Picture: Stuart Hughes

Stuart Hughes

A former factory worker from Dagenham who is dying from an asbestos-related condition is appealing for his ex-work colleagues to help him in a possible legal bid for compensation.

Gerald Palmer, a great-grandfather who was an RAF engineer during the Second World War, is terminally ill with mesothelioma, a form of lung cancer commonly caused by asbestos exposure.

The 97-year-old wants to talk to former colleagues at Pritchett & Gold’s Dagenham plant to help establish facts about the manufacturing process, which he said involved asbestos.

Mr Palmer and his family are considering legal action following his diagnosis.

Pritchett & Gold were a well-known Dagenham employer who manufactured batteries for aircraft, submarines and the automotive industry.

Mr Palmer worked at the factory from 1938 to 1939 and again from 1947 to 1949 after the war.

He said: “The whole thing has come as a great shock to me as I have never had any major health concerns. It has left me feeling tired and I am suffering from increasing shortness of breath.”

His son, John Palmer, said: “I put his breathlessness down to old age but then I noticed that I could hear him struggling for breath when he was just sitting in his chair.

“That was the fluid building up in his chest and he later had a litre drained from his lungs in hospital.

“I can’t recollect my dad ever being in hospital and he said to me he’s never been in hospital before. It is alien to him.”

According to the last figures released by Cancer Research UK, Mesothelioma claimed the lives on 2,567 in 2014.

Jan Garvey, from the National Asbestos Helpline, says: “Mesothelioma is a cruel and aggressive lung cancer.

It is devastating a generation of people who have worked hard all their lives.

“Not enough is being done by the government and insurance companies to help victims and their families and we need more funding for research into more effective treatments.”

Anyone familiar with the firm’s manufacturing process during the 1940s and 1950s can contact Helen Bradley in confidence on 0161 238 5637 or hxbradley@birchallblackburn.co.uk.

Latest Barking and Dagenham Stories

8 minutes ago

Vanarama National League: Halifax Town 2 (Kosylo 29, Edwards 59) Dagenham & Redbridge 1 (Adeloye 33)

14:30

The 33-year-old admitted the Eagles were disappointed with how they played in this year’s Vitality Blast

Wondering what the weather has in store for us this weekend? Watch our Met Office video forecast.

Yesterday, 19:00

Sainsbury’s is trialling a summer holiday multi-sports camp in Barking where children can play and eat a healthy lunch, all for £7.50 a day.

Yesterday, 18:00

The 22-year-old played for the under-23s on Monday night and wants to keep his match fitness up

Yesterday, 16:00

Dagenham & Redbridge manager Peter Taylor will hope to avoid a repeat of their past mistakes when they make the trip to Halifax Town this weekend.

Yesterday, 13:00

West Ham United return to the London Stadium for their first home game of the new Premier League term on Saturday when Bournemouth visit.

Yesterday, 12:00

A misconduct panel heard how James Durrance, a special constable with Essex Police, told Asda security and employees that he was an officer following the incident on June 9, 2016, and showed his warrant card.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Barking and Dagenham is home to Better Extreme, London’s largest indoor skatepark. Whatever your discipline, be it skateboarding, inline, BMX or scootering, there’s a challenge waiting for you.

Barking Sporthouse has a wide range of fun things to do with your children this summer

The festive season is a hectic time for many, with frenzied dashes to the shops for groceries and gifts, and parties to arrange and attend.

Newsletter Sign Up

Barking and Dagenham Post twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Barking and Dagenham Post
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now