Lawyers are calling for help in identifying how a former lingerie seller at Harrods came into contact with asbestos after she was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Sandra Schaverien, of New Road, Radlett, is suffering from mesothelioma - a cancer in the lining of the lungs caused by exposure to the deadly dust.

The 75-year-old worked at Harrods between 1991 and 2001 and believes she may have been exposed to asbestos dust in the underground tunnels beneath the flagship London department store, which she used to walk through to access the store and collect merchandise.

Harrods says it has not been contacted about the investigation.

Ms Schaverien, who recently lost her husband to Parkinson's disease, has now sought help from law firm Irwin Mitchell to find out exactly where she came in contact with asbestos.

She is backing the firm's call for her former colleagues at Harrods to get in touch as they may have information about the potential presence of the dangerous material.

Ms Schaverien said: "I found out nearly two years ago in the summer. I started suffering from chest pains and struggling to breathe.

"I am still shell-shocked and in sheer disbelief that someone or something has shortened my life - it's frightening. I had to have my lungs re-sealed and when I went to see the surgeon, they said 'so which store did you work at'."

The mother of three said she had to put her husband, who suffered from Parkinson's disease for ten years, into a care home as her own health deteriorated.

She said: "I visited him every day until he passed away, but I felt unable to share my diagnosis with him because I wanted to spare him unnecessary anxiety."

Helen England, a lawyer representing Ms Schaverien, said: "Sandra has been devastated by her terminal diagnosis and understandably wants answers about where was exposed to asbestos.

"She can recall the underground tunnels that she used to have to regularly walk through as being very dusty. We would like to hear from anyone who worked at Harrods between 1991 and 2001 as they may have vital information that could help provide answers to the many questions Sandra has."

In a statement, Harrods said: "We are very sorry to hear of the ill health of a former employee. Harrods has not received any request for an investigation into this matter, therefore we are unable to provide any further comment or information.

"Employee wellbeing is our priority and we would take any claim extremely seriously."

Anyone with any information about the working conditions at Harrods during that period is asked to contact Ms England by emailing or calling 0207 4213896.