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A Devon steel erector aged just 46 has been left shell-shocked after being diagnosed as suffering from mesothelioma.

Mark Piper, from Crediton, believes he may have been exposed to asbestos while working for Michael Thorne Construction between 1998 and 2011, when the firm went into liquidation.

During that time he was involved building extensions on several old commercial properties and was required to remove asbestos downpipes and guttering using a grinder.

Piper, who is still working in the construction industry, said: "My diagnosis was a complete shock to all of us and we are really struggling to come to terms with what it means for us now and in the future. 

"I was never given any training on the correct way to handle asbestos and avoid exposure or provided with any protective equipment to prevent me from being exposed to the substance.

"I know that this disease will limit the amount of time I will spend with my family and I can only hope that my former colleagues at Michael Thorne Construction will come forward with the information my legal team needs to provide the answers I'm looking for about my exposure to asbestos."

Anyone with information on the working conditions at Michael Thorne Construction should contact Leanne Leighton on 0117 926 1530 or email

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