A year ago Bob Charman was carrying heavy wooden doors around a building site, but since then there have been times when he has struggled to tie his shoelaces without getting breathless.
Last year he was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a lung cancer almost always linked to asbestos exposure.
Bob, 64, knew that he might not see many more Christmases. The prognosis for mesothelioma is not great.
"It is pretty grim when you read the literature," he said.
In Bob's case there seems little doubt that working with asbestos early in his career is the cause of his illness.
"We would saw it and file it and the dust would fly around... you'd put a hanky round your face like a bandit. We didn't have masks and respirators."
But despite this demonstrable link, Bob cannot get access to the compensation to which he is clearly entitled and which would provide a measure of comfort in his remaining years.
Along with hundreds - possibly thousands - of other victims, he cannot identify which insurance company covered his employer at the time he was exposed to asbestos.
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