Saturday 16 April 2011


Well, perhaps SOS is a bit OTT - it wasn't an emergency, but we have been fully occupied with DIY for the last few days....Not at home, but in Bristol where we have been helping son Jack with painting and decorating, flat pack furniture assembly and fixing, decisions about flooring and providing a sherpa service to transport heavy items.  Fit and strong as Jack is, there are still some things that need more that one pair of hands to construct and fix, or more than two wheels to transport.  We were happy to provide support in both respects.  In return, Jack will help with DIY at our house sometime later this year.

We'll be back in Bristol again very soon for a Wride family get together to spring clean Steve's mum's house and cut back/tidy up the garden.....I wonder whether we can persuade everyone to come back here and do the same at our house.  We've been out and about and staying away from home so much these last few weeks, that only basic jobs have been done in addition to packing, unpacking and repacking.  

A friend asked whether I was enjoying putting my feet up now I'm "retired" which made me laugh - our feet have hardly touched the ground since the end of March and it looks like life will carry on at a similar pace for the rest of April, most of May and up to mid-June when Steve has his next assessment. However, although I finished work nearly three weeks ago, there is still paperwork to deal with. Amongst the letters waiting for us at home last night was one from my occupational pension scheme confirming that my pension and voluntary early leaving compensation benefits have been authorised - which is great, except that they have made a mistake about the date of my last day of service. Ho hum - another thing to sort out.....

With no word from Steve's legal team, the jury's still out on whether the damages case will go forward as planned in early September or will be withdrawn.  Not much point in getting stressed about it in either event.  I know we have done everything we can in terms of going through the evidence with a fine tooth comb to highlight all the records of asbestos in the building where we believe Steve was exposed whilst doing some demolition work as a student.  

In fact, the last systematic review of all the disclosed documents revealed that asbestos insulation board (AIB) was used under all the windows in the building in question. Although now sealed/encapsulated to minimize the risk of fibres being released through accidental damage, this safety measure was not put in place until 2002, long after Steve's six years as a student in these rooms with exposed AIB panels. School children, teachers and support staff have developed mesothelioma through exposure in similar circumstances.  Perhaps we should consider making a damages claim on that basis, if the current case is withdrawn....

No matter, the sun is shining and it's a special weekend for two dear friends - Happy birthday Sally for today and Ian for Monday - enjoy your celebrations!

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