UK Mesothelioma Victim Files Suit Against Sir Richard Branson

A 74-year-old former shop fitter from the United Kingdom has filed a mesothelioma lawsuit against Sir Richard Branson, the billionaire and former owner of Virgin Records. According to the claim, Bernard Jones had worked on the first retail space for the iconic record store and was exposed to asbestos while doing demolition and installation work. His suit predicts that his life will be shortened by approximately 12 years and seeks over  £200,000, which is close to $280,000 dollars.

Mesothelioma Death Rate in the UK is Higher than in the United States

Mesothelioma is a global scourge. While the United States sees an estimated 3,500 deaths from the rare, asbestos-related disease, the United Kingdom reports roughly 2,700 new cases per year. Though this number is smaller than that of the U.S., the incidence rate as a percentage of population is far higher. This is blamed on the extensive use of the material in shipbuilding and when the country was rebuilding after World War II. 

Though it is now understood that exposure to asbestos causes malignant mesothelioma, Mr. Jones’ claim dates back to work he did between 1971 and 1973, before the material’s dangers became common knowledge. He reports having been one of six workers who converted an old shoe shop into London’s first Virgin Records store on Oxford Street, as well as doing the same work in another location on Sloane Street. He cites old insulation boards and sheets that were ripped out, raising significant amounts of dust. He claims that he swept and removed the debris, was present when new asbestos insulation boards were cut, installed those new boards himself, and even slept in the other Virgin Records shop location, where he suffered further exposure.

Mesothelioma Diagnosed One Year Ago

Mr. Jones reports that he first experienced symptoms of mesothelioma in early 2020. He began receiving treatment including immunotherapy and wrote to Virgin Records Ltd in July to report his illness. After that claim received no response his attorneys sent another letter and email which was also ignored, leaving him no choice but to file a claim with the High Court. He is accusing the entrepreneur and Virgin Records, which Branson no longer owns, of negligence.

If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, then identifying the source of your exposure is the first step in getting justice. For assistance, contact the Patient Advocates at today at 1-800-692-8608.

Terri Heimann Oppenheimer

Terri Oppenheimer

Terri Heimann Oppenheimer is the head writer of our news blog. She graduated from the College of William and Mary with a degree in English. Terri believes that knowledge is power and she is committed to sharing news about the impact of mesothelioma, the latest research and medical breakthroughs, and victims’ stories.

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