A CHELMSFORD grandma battling terminal cancer linked to asbestos is facing a race against time to secure answers over how she contracted the disease.

Diane Edridge, whose maiden name was Diane Coalbran, is now appealing for old workmates at Weir Pumps in London’s Docklands to come forward with information after she was diagnosed with mesothelioma.

Following her devastating diagnosis, the 66-year-old instructed specialist lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate how she could have come into contact with asbestos dust and fibres.

Diane’s legal team hope that her former colleagues from Weir Pumps will have information to help provide her family with answers “before it is too late”.

Ian Bailey, partner and expert asbestos-related disease lawyer, said: “Diane’s diagnosis has come as a huge shock to her.

“Although Diane has a good recollection of her work and the factory, she needs to know how asbestos was used within the factory as part of the manufacturing and repair processes.

“She is determined to get to the bottom of what has caused her mesothelioma before it is too late.

“We appeal to anyone who might be able to provide us with information about the use of asbestos in the engineering workshops at the Weir Pumps building on Caxton Street.

“Even the smallest detail could mean that Diane will be able to access the care and support she will need in the coming months.”

Diane, who has seven grandchildren, grew up in Kildare Road, Canning Town.

She developed symptoms including breathlessness and pain in her side at the end of 2017. Following a series of tests it was confirmed that she had mesothelioma.

The lifelong West Ham United fan was told that this is an incurable cancer of the lining of the lung which is commonly associated with asbestos exposure.

As part of their ongoing investigations, Diane’s legal team are specifically appealing for information regarding the working conditions at Weir Pumps in Caxton Street, when she was employed as an office junior between 1968 and 1974.

Diane, who now lives in Chelmsford, started work at Weir Pumps shortly after leaving school at 16.

Her father, Harry Coalbran, was a prominent member of the community who was the Secretary of the Boilermakers and Shipwrights Association.

Diane said: “I remember being able to look out of the office window and see the shop floor, where workers would be repairing or stripping down pumps which had come in on boats.

“While I was based primarily in the office, my role did mean I had to go into the workshops to check orders and also hand out wages.

“The labourers I would see were always busy and sweeping up dust and dirt.

“I’m just completely devastated to have been told I have mesothelioma and feel I deserve to know just how this could have happened.

“Any help in getting answers about this would be hugely appreciated.”

Anyone with information which may assist this case is asked to contact Ian Bailey at Irwin Mitchell’s London office on 0207 421 4754 or email ian.bailey@irwinmitchell.com