Free asbestos removal by Erith in Manchester


The firm worked with the ​​​​​​​Breaking the Waves Foundation to enable the redevelopment of its HQ building. 

Photograph of the Breaking the Waves asbestos removal event.
Credit: Erith.

The foundation is located in Failsworth, Greater Manchester and supports 250 people a week with food, clothing, toys and non-essential items. 

Co-Founders Gemma Blackhurst and Lisa Gill first ran operations through Blackhurst’s house before moving to a temporary space in the local town hall. 

When demand increased, the council gave the foundation the use of a former Baptist church.

The foundation secured funding and support from National Gas to expand and refurbish the church.

National Gas then put the foundation in contact with Erith.

Asbestos removal

Across 387 local authorities in England, Scotland and Wales, there are around 87,000 public buildings that contain asbestos, according to a recent report by Irwin Mitchell. 

The material was used widely in the UK between the 1930s and 1980s. 

It has been linked to mesothelioma (terminal cancer) and asbestosis (a chronic lung disease). 

Asbestos-related diseases cause around 5,000 deaths every year in the UK, according to the Health and Safety Commission (HSC). 

A licensed contractor can only do high-risk asbestos removal, and Erith has held its licence since 1983

The firm has helped housing associations, local authorities and non-profit organisations. 


Once built, the refurnished building will include the following:

  • A space for fridges and freezers to store food donations. 
  • A community space for locals. 

An event was held in celebration of the completion of the asbestos removal. 

National Gas and Rt Hon Angela Rayner MP were in attendance.

“I am so proud to represent them as their MP, and I am delighted that we were able to find a way to fund these essential works on the new premises,” Ms Rayner said to the Oldham Chronicle

Erith was approached for further comment.

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