Another correspondent raises further questions:
So was the asbestos story “wrong” or did fire crews take special precautions? What danger are locals in if it was the latter?
And points to evidence contained in this reference, [This is a 2020 witness appeal for evidence of the use of asbestos in the Knowle, following the inquest report on the sad death of a former EDDC CEO]
This indicates that a survey report retained by the Council does show high level of asbestos within the building.
In the 90’s action was taken to remove it from the Council Chamber and whilst it was present in the building it was claimed that if not disturbed they would have been safe.
Reference is also made to an occasion when workmen accidentally disturbed asbestos during maintenance work. Apparently this was reported in the press as staff had potentially been put at risk.
Unfortunately many old buildings contain asbestos. UK was a major importer. By 1985 this amounted to seven million tons.