Heartbroken widow of London Underground worker seeking answers after asbestos-related death Heartbroken widow of worker seeking answers after asbestos-related death

THE heartbroken widow of a former London Underground worker who died from an asbestos-related disease is appealing for information about the working conditions he faced.
Ghislaine Valledy, 56, hopes James Valledy’s former colleagues will come forward with details about the working conditions her husband faced during the 1960s and 1970s to help with an investigation into his exposure to the deadly dust.
Mr Valledy, who was known as Jim to friends and family, died in October last year, aged 78, after a period of ill health and a stay at St Helena Hospice.
An inquest held in December found he had died from asbestosis.
During his time working on the London Underground he recalls replacing cabling in the tunnels and brushing past pipework which was insulated with asbestos.
Another source of Jim’s exposure allegedly occurred when he worked as a plumber fitting out launderettes and dry-cleaners during the mid 1960s.
Jim, who lived in Colchester before his death, also worked installing farm building roofing while employed by firm J Taylor & Sons in Abberton.
During this time he recalled cutting asbestos sheeting and corrugated asbestos roof sheets, which he and his former colleagues installed on farm buildings across East Anglia.
This job exposed Jim to quantities of asbestos during the late 1970s.
In early 2016 Jim began to feel unwell.
He was nursed at home by his wife Ghislaine, who suffers with Multiple Sclerosis, and their two daughters. After several weeks Jim’s care needs increased, requiring him to be cared for at St Helena Hospice, in Colchester.
Jim was never told he was suffering from asbestosis, though he had been diagnosed with pleural plaques, scarring of the lung caused by asbestos exposure, in 1999.
At an inquest at Chelmsford Coroner’s Court in December last year, area coroner Eleanor McGann recorded the cause of death as asbestosis as a result of his exposure.
Now Ghislaine has recruited Ashtons Legal to investigate the conditions he faced throughout his working life.
She is appealing for former colleagues to contact the firm with any information.
She said: “It was very difficult to watch Jim become ill as he was always very active and strong.
“It is an awful illness and one that affected Jim at such a rapid rate.
“To think his illness stemmed from exposure to asbestos decades ago is hard for me and our girls to come to terms with.”
She added: “Jim and I loved to socialise and he was a very liked and well known gentleman where we live.
“I miss him dearly, I hope with the help of Jim’s former colleagues and Ashtons Legal we will be able to find some answers and secure justice for Jim.”
Anyone with information about the working conditions at London Underground between 1960 and 1970, or who recalls working with Jim, is asked to contact Phoebe Osborne at Ashtons Legal on 01223 431159 or email phoebe.osborne@ashtonslegal.co.uk.