Map of asbestos risk in English schools published

24th July 2015

Schoolchildren in Essex, Kent, Hertfordshire and Birmingham are among those at the highest risk of asbestos exposure in England, according to a new map created by law firm Stephensons.

By using Freedom of Information (FoI) requests, Stephensons created a map to show exactly how many children across England’s local authorities are under threat of asbestos exposure. The most at-risk group has more than 160,000 children in danger of coming into contact with the deadly material – with Birmingham, Essex, Hertfordshire and Kent falling into this category.

Other high risk areas (where more than 100,000 children are under threat of exposure) include Hampshire, Sussex, Norfolk and Lancashire.

At the other end of the scale, schoolchildren in Hereford and Berkshire were found to be at least risk, as only 20,000 or fewer were facing such risks in these locations.

Whilst London broke down into individual authorities, as a whole it housed some 1.2 million children at risk of asbestos exposure.

Commenting, Kate Sweeney from Stephensons told “Many people still think that asbestos is only a threat to factory or trade workers and this simply isn’t the case.

“The deadly material has been used in all types of buildings since the 1950s and is still present in the majority of schools in the UK due to ageing stock. These figures are very concerning and the fact that parents have no right to be notified, even more so.

She went on to claim that parents deserve better access to information on the measures their local education authorities are taking to keep children safe.