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Country’s first centre detecting radioactive gas celebrates 25th anniversary

PUBLISHED: 17:30 01 December 2017

Glencoe Radon Gas Centre celebrated its 25th anniversary. Pictured with guest Weston Mayor Jos Holder, are (left to right) Phil Hancock, Carrie Ormerod, Daniel Hancock, Jonathan Hancock, Ross Dyer and Mike Hancock.

Glencoe Radon Gas Centre celebrated its 25th anniversary. Pictured with guest Weston Mayor Jos Holder, are (left to right) Phil Hancock, Carrie Ormerod, Daniel Hancock, Jonathan Hancock, Ross Dyer and Mike Hancock.

Archant

A ‘pioneering’ Weston-super-Mare business which safely disposes of potentially-deadly radioactive gas is celebrating is 25th anniversary.

Glencoe Radon Gas Centre (GRGC), based at the Old Worle Quarry in Lower Kewstoke Road, has been toasting a quarter of a century in business tackling lung cancer-causing gas radon.

The company was formed by Phillip Hancock in 1992, becoming the first radon gas centre in the country – creating and installing technologies to detect and reduce the presence of the radioactive element.

His four sons, Jonathan, Michael, Daniel, and Ross Dyer have since joined the board of the industry-leading firm, which holds patents for a number of inventions – including the Radvac Radon Sump which reduces radon levels – and sits on a several influential trade councils.

Mr Hancock said: “We’re market leaders and we’re setting standards. We are the trademark.

“People come to us nationally and we’ve developed all this ahead of everyone.

“I am extremely proud of my sons, they spearhead a lot of the things we do. Without their support we wouldn’t be able to do it.

“We’re still pioneering and we are looking next year to provide jobs and contract work locally.”

Radon is a colourless, odourless radioactive gas, formed by the radioactive decay of the small amounts of uranium which occur naturally in all rocks and soils. It is in every building everywhere around the world, usually in safe, harmless levels.

But exposure to radon gas’ decay products, which emit alpha radiation and can be inhaled, can cause damage to DNA in the lungs which can in turn lead to cancerous cell mutations.

After smoking, radon exposure is the leading cause of lung cancer in the UK, with more than 1,100 deaths attributed to it each year.

The business welcomed Weston’s Mayor and Mayoress, Jos Holder and Roz Willis, to an anniversary celebration on November 22, where the firm’s experts delivered a tour of its facilities.

Mr Hancock added: “We’re local people and we were very proud and to host the Mayor and Mayoress. I think they were taken aback by the effects of radon.”

Mr Hancock told the Mercury the presence of radon is ‘very serious and homeowners should take notice’, with GRGC offering discounted home-testing kits in the new year.

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