Asbestos Knowledge Empire: ‘UK is sitting on an asbestos timebomb’

The UK is sitting on an asbestos timebomb

RAISING awareness of the hidden dangers of asbestos is a key part of the work we do at Acorn Analytical Services.

After more than 20 years in the asbestos industry, and having met people who have been directly affected by mesothelioma – the cancer caused by prolonged exposure to asbestos – it is something I feel passionately about and I know my colleagues feel the same way.

Together, over the years, we have raised this important issue with MPs and Peers and taken part in a number of campaigns on behalf of Mesothelioma UK – the only national charity dedicated to supporting people affected by this devastating disease.

This week, director Neil Munro and I were delighted to mark the return of our podcast Asbestos Knowledge Empire, by welcoming Liz Darlison, the Chief Executive of Mesothelioma UK in to speak to us about the important work the charity does and why we believe the UK is sitting on an asbestos timebomb.

Think asbestos is a thing of the past? Think again

Far from being a problem that has been consigned to the history books, asbestos is a real problem, right now.

During our chat, Liz explained that each year in the UK more than 2,500 people die from asbestos-related mesothelioma – tragically, many of them within a year of being diagnosed.

Onset of symptoms can be sudden – breathlessness while climbing the stairs, a cough that won’t go away or a persistent pain in the chest – and it is essential that you get anything unusual checked out as soon as possible, particularly if you know you have been exposed in the past.

Mesothelioma UK supports people affected by this terrible disease by offering information through its network of nurses and funding research into possible new treatments.

Liz also explained how she believes more needs to be done to open up a meaningful conversation about the dangers of asbestos now – before it is too late.

What can be done to tackle the asbestos epidemic?

It might not dominate the headlines anymore, but asbestos is still out there – and our team of experts see it in buildings each and every day.

While its use in new buildings was finally banned in the UK in 1999, many people don’t realise that it remains hidden inside many of the buildings we use all the time – including schools, hospitals and offices.

If it is damaged or fractured as a result of general wear and tear, or disturbed as part of building works or repairs, the tiny fibres which make up asbestos sheets are released into the air where they can go on to cause mesothelioma in anyone who breathes them in.

Carrying out a full asbestos survey is the only way to know for sure if it is present in your building. If it is, an effective management plan can be put in place to ensure everyone around you is protected.

Liz told us: “People like you are at the frontline in this battle. Never underestimate the difference you are making. The work you are doing is saving lives.”

To listen to our chat with Liz in full click here or access the latest episode through your usual provider.

For more information about the work we do and the range of services we offer visit

Acorn is a professional consultancy helping organisations deal with compliance using surveysair testing, and removal management. 

Please call one of the team, or use the online form to obtain your free quotation. If you would like further information or advice on asbestos and asbestos training, contact the team on 0844 818 0895 or Contact Us

Ian Stone

I am based out of our Northampton office but regularly travel to meet with new and existing clients. I have assisted thousands of clients over the years on varying-sized projects, several have been schemes totalling over one million pounds spent purely on asbestos. Together with Neil Munro, I host our weekly podcast – Asbestos Knowledge Empire and I am Co-author of Asbestos The Dark Arts and Fear and Loathing of Health and Safety.

Need Help? Request a Call Back

Request a call back from one of our expert Asbestos Consultants who will help you identify what you need

More Asbestos Articles

Asbestos: Rates of mesothelioma continue to soar in women

Asbestos: Number of women affected by mesothelioma continues to soar

MORE women than ever are being affected by exposure to asbestos according to statistics published by Cancer Research UK. Between 2016 and 2018 rates of mesothelioma – the cancer caused by exposure to asbestos fibres -soared by 93% in women. Among those affected is 78-year-old Susan Ellis who recently shared her story with the Daily … Read more

Dan Crask and David Kelsey represent asbestos management consultancy, Acorn, at the NBCAs

Acorn Analytical Services – leading the way in the fight against asbestos epidemic

IT has been a busy year for the team at Acorn Analytical Services as we continue to work with new clients, grow our team and cement our place as one of the leading asbestos management companies in the UK. As we approach the end of the year, we thought we would take a moment to … Read more

Education is key to understanding asbestos

Understanding asbestos: Why educating your team is key

THE devastating effects of asbestos have been highlighted this week after a pensioner from Northamptonshire won compensation from a former employer after developing an asbestos-related illness. Patrick Collier, a former painter and decorator, received compensation in the Royal Courts of Justice after developing pleural thickening. His illness meant that he had to give up work … Read more

Remembering those who have died from asbestos exposure at work

One death from exposure to asbestos is one too many – it’s time for change

EACH year on December 12, the team at Acorn Analytical Services takes a moment to remember the lives lost in workplaces up and down the UK, either through injury or exposure to asbestos. By pausing to remember those who have died from workplace accidents, or from diseases such as lung cancer or mesothelioma, National Workplace … Read more

The UK is sitting on an asbestos timebomb

Asbestos Knowledge Empire: ‘UK is sitting on an asbestos timebomb’

RAISING awareness of the hidden dangers of asbestos is a key part of the work we do at Acorn Analytical Services. After more than 20 years in the asbestos industry, and having met people who have been directly affected by mesothelioma – the cancer caused by prolonged exposure to asbestos – it is something I … Read more

England star Stuart Pearce has helped to raise awareness of mesothelioma

Mesothelioma: How an England footballer is bringing home the dangers of this hidden killer

THIS afternoon, England’s Three Lions made a winning start to their World Cup campaign beating Iran in their first match in Qatar. But one footballing legend fears he could be in danger of developing mesothelioma after starting his career as an electrician in the 1980s. While former England legend Stuart Pearce is now undoubtedly best … Read more

Viviana, one of the newest members of Acorn's team

Team talk: Meet Viviana one of the talented new recruits at Acorn Analytical Services

WITH the UK in the grip of an asbestos epidemic, recruiting talented, experienced staff to join the award-winning team of experts at Acorn Analytical Services has never been more important. Despite being banned in new buildings more than 20 years ago, asbestos remains a huge problem for many businesses and, as a result, demand for … Read more

It's time to learn your asbestos ABC

Asbestos: How learning your ABC could help us to save lives

At Acorn Analytical Services we have one very simple message – ABC – or Asbestos Before Construction. It’s a simple message but it’s also an important one. Before carrying out building work of any kind you must check for the presence of asbestos first. Not doing so could have potentially serious implications for the health … Read more

Our Movember heroes, Lewis, Dave and Dan

Meet Dave, Dan and Lewis – Acorn’s amazing Movember heroes

AS we start November, Acorn Analytical Services is very proud to be supporting Movember, the annual charity event which shines a spotlight on men’s health, in particular, mental health and suicide prevention, prostate cancer and testicular cancer. We pride ourselves on being at the heart of our community and we always try to give back … Read more

Asbestos management company is growing

Acorn Analytical Services: An ambitious asbestos management company which continues to grow

FROM small acorns strong businesses grow – something that everyone at Acorn Analytical Services is extremely proud of. Even in turbulent times, Acorn Analytical Services continues to lead the way, offering reliable asbestos management services to a wide range of businesses and organisations – from well-known high street brands to local schools and colleges. In … Read more