Hand Rolling

Probably one of the last out of the many small Sheffield based rolling mills. The Little Matlock Rolling Mill in Sheffield, England was built in 1864 then driven by the water power of the Loxley River.
In 1957 an electric motor replaced the water wheel (which is still there).
The mill was later owned by Barworth Flockton Ltd and in 1997 it was taken over by Firth Rixson Ltd.
After a two year closure Pro-Roll Ltd took the site over in 2001 and saved the rolling mill from demolition.
Pro-Roll Ltd today hand rolls bars in small lots and from speciality alloys.
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British Steel Ltd.

former Tata Steel, Corus, British Steel Corp., Appleby Frodingham is on the verge of collapse.
Talks with the government on rescuing the steel group failed on Wednesday.
British Steel is owned by private equity group Greybull Capital, main products are rails.
According to Greybull shrinking orders due to Brexit-related issues and  difficult market conditions are to blame for the financial problems.

Blast furnaces Victoria, Anne, Bess and Mary.

llanwern Blast Furnace No.3

llanwern steel works
One of the most short-lived fully integrated plants in the history of steel making was torn down 15 years ago.
Built by the Welsh steel maker Richard Thomas and Baldwins Ltd in 1962 the site became part of nationalised British Steel Corporation in 1967 and was called Llanwern works from then on.
In 1974 No. 3 blast furnace was the third to be built on the site and with it’s 11,2 m hearth and two tapping holes it was the first modern large volume furnace in Britain.
Furnaces No. 1 and No. 2 had a hearth diameter of 9,1 m.
Because of the lack of a deep-water iron ore unloading terminal the iron and steel making facilities, including  the three 175 t converters of the BOF shop, where closed down in 2001 after producing steel for less than 39 years.

Sheffield Steel


Now at Stahlseite.
The Little Matlock Rolling Mill in Sheffield, England was built in 1864 then driven by the water power of the Loxley River.
In 1957 an electric motor replaced the water wheel (which is still there).
The mill was later owned by Barworth Flockton Ltd and in 1997 it was taken over by Firth Rixson Ltd.
After a two year closure Pro-Roll Ltd took the site over in 2001 and saved the rolling mill from demolition.
Pro-Roll Ltd today hand rolls bars in small lots and from speciality alloys.

Four Queens

Victoria, Anne, Bess and Mary.
Further viewing at Stahlseite.
Tata Steel’s integrated steel plant in Scunthorpe, GB was founded in 1864 under the name Frodingham Iron Works.
Iron was produced from local iron ore deposits since 1865. A Thomas converter steel making shop started it’s production in 1890.
In 1912 Frodingham took over the nearby Appleby Iron Co. (founded in 1874) to form the Appleby Frodingham Steel Co.
This enterprise became part of the United Steel Companies in 1937. In 1939 two new large volume blast furnaces were installed (Mary & Bess). In 1954 Anne and Victoria were added to complete the “Four Queens”.

In 1967 the United Steel Companies became part of the newly founded British Steel Corporation.
The Anchor project (1969-1973), one of the largest investments into the British steel industry ever, brought a new BOF shop, new rolling mills and the Immingham iron ore terminal by the Humber river.
British Steel merged with Koninklijke Hoogovens from the Netherlands to form Corus in 1999. Eigth years later Corus was taken over by the Tata Steel group from India.
Tata Scunthorpe today consists of 4 blast furnaces (three active) a BOF shop containing three 300 ton vessels, a slab caster, a bloom caster and three rolling mills (rails, heavy plate and wire).

Spartan UK


Images now on my website.
The heavy plate rolling mill in Gateshead, UK dates back to the former Redheugh Iron and Steel Co founded in 1918. The company rolled plates and sheet and provided welding, steel constructions and engineering. Redheugh Co employed more than 800 people in the 1960ies.
In 1970 the company was taken over by Spartan Steel&Alloys from Sheffield.
In 1975 a new 2,1 meter heavy plate rolling stand was installed.
Spartan Redheugh was absorbed by the Firth holding company in 1988.
In 2001 the Gruppo Malacalza of Italy bought the plant and sold it again in 2008 to the Metinvest group from the Ukraine.

The Abbey Works

Though largely downsized the Welsh heavy industry is still worth a visit. The old Abbey works in Port Talbot provide the largest BOF vessels I have seen so far and the longest serving hot strip mill in Europe.
Images now on my website.

Three steel mills were built on the shoreline of Port Talbot south of Swansea, Wales over the last 110 years.
The Port Talbot Works (1902-1961)
The Margam Works (1918-1963)
The Abbey Works (1951-Present)
The Port Talbot works were founded in 1902 by the Gilbertson family. The mill produced iron from imported pig iron in three cupola furnaces and ran an open hearth shop with two furnaces.
The mill was shut down due to technical problems in 1903 and reopened in 1906 by the Port Talbot Steel Company Ltd. .
Two rolling mills and a new open hearth shop were built in between 1908 and 1914.
In 1917 the plant became fully integrated with the construction of the new Margam site half a mile southward. Two blast furnaces , a coking plant and a new open hearth shop were built until 1922. In 1930 the mill became part of the GKB (Guest, Keen, Baldwin) Steel company. Main product were plates and rails.
In 1941 a third blast furnaces became operable at the Margam site.
All three blast furnaces were completly rebuilt after WW II.
In the late 1940ies a plan to build a new huge integrated steel plant south of the Margam works the so called Abbey works was implemented.
Centerpiece of the new site was a wide hot strip mill built by United Engineering of Pittsburgh and partly financed by funds from the Marshall plan.
This rolling mill became operational in 1951. A new open hearth shop containing eight 200 ton furnaces started production in 1952. Two new blast furnaces were built on the site in 1956 and 1959 (No. 4 & No. 5).

The Port Talbot works were closed down and dismantled in 1961 and the old Margam site followed in 1963. Only blast furnace No. 3 survived as a standby furnace and was relighted in 1991 for one year and has been dismantled recently.
In 1967 the Steel Company Of Wales became part of the newly founded British Steel Corporation.
In 1969 a new BOF shop providing two 300 ton vessels was installed replacing the old open hearth furnaces.
The hot strip mill was widely overhauled in the late 1980ies (receiving a new roughing stand).
British Steel merged with Koninklijke Hoogovens from the Netherlands to form Corus in 1999. Eigth years later Corus was taken over by the Tata Steel group from India. Blast furnace No. 4 was completly rebuilt in 2012.
Tata Steel Port Talbot today produces hot and cold rolled flat products and supplies slabs to the hot strip mill in Newport, Wales.