David Walsh (Business, October 29) highlights the steel crisis in one article, and tells of a rolling mill site converted into housing in another, pictured below.
This site, on Low Matlock Lane, Loxley, was active until at least 2012, when a Star advert offered jobs as a heat treatment supervisor, a centreless grinder and two general workers. I visited this works with the Sheffield Trades Historical Society in 1994, when it was known as Kenyons, and was owned by Barworth Flockton of Ecclesfield.
The Ecclesfield plant was more modern with continuous rolling, forging press, and at least one high-frequency melting furnace, but the old handmill at Loxley was useful for small lots of high speed steel, or titanium for the aerospace trade. Firth Rixson bought Barworth’s in 2001 and shut the handmill down, only for it to be reopened the following year as Pro-Roll Ltd. It’s sad that this firm has shut now, it seems – also that Kiveton Park is in trouble.
There are about 2,000 metal-working firms in the Sheffield region, and most suffer when steel suffers. Many rely on exports, after the demise of so many British industries – they pay too much in taxes, and far too much for power.
The Goverment seem in thrall to the green lobby and seem to think they will get brownie points at home and abroad if they shut our steel industry down.
They’re panicking a bit now over power cuts, especially now population is heading rapidly towards 75 million, then 100 million thanks to mass immigration. All will need power.
Hopefully they will get the shale gas industry moving fast, and this will bring some sort of stability, and prosperity, as in the US.
Knab Road, S7