Blackpool Pier firm which let employees 'vacuum asbestos' from arcade carpets will be sentenced in 2020

The directors of one of Blackpool's famous piers - who have admitted health and safety offences linked to asbestos - must wait six months to find out their fate.

Monday, 2nd December 2019, 5:00 pm

A court hearing was previously told how asbestos fibres from Blackpool's South Pier were allowed to float along the Promenade, as the pier’s owners cut corners on cost to remove a circus style roof above the main landward arcade.

An asbestos-lined arcade was demolished while visitors were allowed to roam nearby.

A company licenced to remove the dangerous asbestos legally had given the company a £16,000 quote, but instead, its employees started the work.

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South Pier was cordoned off

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Parts of Blackpool’s South Pier cordoned off in safety scare

Three employees had used a Hoover to try to clean asbestos from a carpet during the removal of the roof.

An official notice was served closing down areas of the pier when the illegal contamination was discovered in June 2018.

A previous hearing was told when Health and Safety officers became involved, it took nine days to clean up outside the pier and 12 days to clean up inside the arcade.

The Blackpool Pier Company previously pleaded guilty to eight offences of failing to ensure the health and safety of their employees, failing to ensure the health and safety of the public, and allowing the release of asbestos fibres into the atmosphere.

The company, based on Church Street, Blackpool, also admitted three charges of conniving to commit offences, failing to provide a plan of work being done on the pier and failing to give guidance and instruction for the control of asbestos.

Company finance director Fiona Blaylock, 44, of Arthurs Lane, Hambleton, near Blackpool, admitted one offence of failing to ensure the health and safety of the firm’s employees. Fellow director Peter Sedgwick Jr, 39, of Crane Hall Farm, Out Rawcliffe, near Preston, pleaded guilty to the same offence.

Defence lawyer Peter Gilmore said their pleas were on the full facts of the prosecution's case.

They will now appear before Preston Crown Court on May 1.