A former anti-terror policeman has died from mesothelioma after being exposed to asbestos when he worked at the scene of the Grand Hotel bombing in Brighton in 1984. The police officer came into contact with the material while sifting through rubble at the wreckage.
The main target of the attack was Margaret Thatcher who – along with her cabinet – had been staying at the hotel for the Conservative party conference planned for the following day. A bomb was planted under a bath by IRA member Patrick Magee, but the blast failed to injure Thatcher, though parts of her hotel room were damaged.
One of the first to arrive at the scene, the victim worked with a team which searched for missing persons potentially concealed by rubble. Retiring from the Metropolitan Police in 2002, the police officer moved to France with his wife, but was unfortunately diagnosed with the incurable lung disease three decades after being exposed.
Responding to his mesothelioma diagnosis, he issued a writ to the Metropolitan and Sussex Police, claiming that during the incident he wasn't provided with adequate protection.
It is thought that the victim's family are pursuing the case.