Asbestos is a natural mineral made up of many small fibres. There are three main types; blue, brown and white, all can be harmful. Asbestos has been used for many years in building materials and consumer goods. Materials that were used to resist heat often contain asbestos.
If your home is more than 15 years old (1960's to 1980's), it is possible that it contains materials made from asbestos.
Further information can be found on the HSE website.