An inquest has heard how a former footballer died from an asbestos-related disease.

Colin Harper, who played for Ipswich Town for more than ten years, died from mesothelioma on 29 March, aged 71.

An inquest in Ipswich was told he had been exposed to asbestos when he worked as an apprentice joiner and carpenter before he became a professional footballer.

A conclusion of death through industrial disease was recorded.

The hearing heard from Assistant Suffolk coroner Dr Dan Sharpstone who said Mr Harper had cut asbestos with a circular saw when he was an apprentice. ThisĀ “generated a lot of dust”, which was “impossible to avoid”.

The hearing was told Harper was never warned of the dangers of asbestos and was never given a mask to wear.

He had been undergoing radiotherapy and chemotherapy treatment before he was transferred to St Elizabeth Hospice in Ipswich for end of life care, where he died.