Inquest into the death of former Stanton worker

THE CORONER recorded a narrative verdict after an inquest into the death of a former Stanton worker.

Dick Belshaw, 80, died on May 21 at the Stanton Hall nursing home in Stanton by Dale, Ilkeston.

Paul McCandless, assistant deputy coroner for Derbyshire, heard evidence of Mr Belshaw’s working history from his son Keith at an inquest held on Tuesday.

Mr Belshaw’s son told the court that his father worked at the Stanton Ironworks as a turner from 1952 until the plant’s closure in the early 70s.

He said that during his dad’s time there the family had lived on the Stanton site in employee’s accommodation.

He said: “My dad would always have a bad cough, especially at winter time.

“No one ever thought anything of it at the time because everyone there had a cough.”

Mr McCandless also heard evidence from Dr Gurprit Atwal, consultant histopathologist at the Royal Derby Hospital.

He told the court that evidence of coal dust was found in Mr Belshaw’s lungs but he could not say if that was the specific factor that had caused his death.

Recording his verdict, Mr McCandless said: “To return a specific verdict, in this case that of death due to industrial disease or death by natural causes, I have to be certain either way and in this case I can’t be.

“Dick Belshaw’s death was caused by lung disease as a result of coal dust and the fact that he had been, in the past a smoker.

“He also had long standing heart disease.

“Mr Belshaw had spent some 20 years as a turner.”