Probe into asbestos-related deaths of Sheffield steelworkers

Keith Guite
Keith Guite
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Two former Sheffield steelworkers who died from an asbestos-related cancer could have been exposed to the deadly dust in their former workplace.

The families of Basil Laycock and Keith Guite have called in specialist lawyers to find out if they were exposed to asbestos while working at Stocksbridge Works British Steel, known as Samuel Fox’s.

Basil Laycock

Basil Laycock

Mr Laycock died aged 81 in January last year from mesothelioma, a terminal cancer of the lining of the lung, caused by exposure to asbestos dust decades ago. Mr Guite died aged 81 in April 2013 from the same disease.

Both men worked for the firm for more than 35 years.

Former work colleagues are being urged to come forward with information about the presence of potential asbestos at the steel site.

Basil’s daughter Gillian Sharpe, 50, from Sandygate, Sheffield, said: “My dad loved life and his death has really hit the family hard.

“It was awful watching him deteriorate so quickly and now, as a family, we need to know how he came to develop this terrible condition.

“Hopefully, those who worked alongside my Dad and Keith at the Stocksbridge Works will remember them and come forward with the information we need to help us understand why their deaths occurred.”

Keith’s wife Carol, 75, said: “Keith and I were married for 51 years, and the manner of his death was devastating to watch for myself and our three children.

“Their deaths raise many unanswered questions. I sincerely hope answers will be forthcoming.”

Adrian Budgen, of law firm Irwin Mitchell, said: “We would urge anyone who worked with Basil and Keith to get in touch with us. They might be able to provide vital information that may assist with our investigations so that we can achieve justice for his family.”

n Anyone with any information about the working conditions at the steel firm from the 1940s to 1980s should contact Kerry Ford at Irwin Mitchell on 0370 1500 100.