The family of a teacher who died from an asbestos-related disease has been awarded £240,000.

UNISON, the UK’s largest public sector union, helped the relatives of Terence Dugdale, from Southampton, fight for compensation after he contracted cancer of the lung lining, mesothelioma.

The 60-year-old leaves behind six children and his wife Frances, who is warning others of the workplace hazard. She said: “Terence was very practical and wanted to make sure the children and I were looked after financially.

“We had no idea what mesothelioma was before Terence was diagnosed, but now the disease has taken him from us.

“As a family we now feel it is important to let people know how much pain and distress it causes.

“The compensation will never bring Terence back but it does fulfil his wish to know that we are provided for.”

Apprentice Gas Fitter exposed to asbestos

Mr Dugdale had been exposed to asbestos while working as an apprentice gas fitter for National Grid, between 1963 and 1968. He also worked as a housing maintenance inspector for Southampton City Council from 1973 to 1975.

When he was diagnosed with the disease, which can lay dormant for 40 years and has no cure, he was teaching apprentices as a college lecturer.

Phil Wood, UNISON South Regional Secretary said: “It is only right that asbestos victims and their families are compensated for their suffering and financial hardship.

“However, the money will never make up for the death of a much-loved family member and is a warning to employers regarding the long-term effects of workplace hazards.”

Ann-Marie Christie, from Thompsons’ solicitors, said: “Mesothelioma is a devastating disease for all involved.

“In the past many employers failed to take the necessary safeguards to protect their workers from the effects of asbestos and now families like the Dugdales are paying the price.”