«1974 1975 1976 »

Case made for retaining iron and steel making

An up-dated case for the retention of steelmaking at Shotton is submitted to the Government on behalf of Clwyd County Council, Shotton TUC Committee, Shotton Works Action Committee and Deeside and District Action Committee. It envisages the development of Shotton as a medium-sized steel making plant, with BOS furnaces producing 2.05 million tonnes of steel a year. The new plant would cost £129million and produce hot rolled coil at £75.00 a tonne, £5.00 a tonne cheaper than coil supplied by Port Talbot. The saving would be £10 million a year. It was recognised that modernised steelmaking would require of reduction in the work force of around 2,000. (Source: Gordon Smith memo to Shotton Works Management Committee, 14th May 1975).

Cold mill developments

Over £20million has been spent on increasing the cold rolling capacity of the works from 1.1 million tonnes a year to 1.6 million tonnes. The developments include a unique outside storage facility for hot rolled coil, modifications to A and B pickle lines, a new £7.5 million computer controlled five-stand cold reduction mill with a design capacity of 20,000 tonnes a week, new single stack annealing furnaces and a new No.4 temper mill, to deal with coils weighing up to 31 tonnes.

Production ends on the Top Yard

Production and processing of sheet steel in the Top Yard area ends after nearly eighty years. The Top Yard building was scheduled for demolition after the Second World War but instead it was developed for the reclamation of damaged material arising in the new hot and cold mills. Initially about 600 tons of strip were salvaged a week but as strip mill output increased – from around 8,000 tons to 25,000 tons – so too did the reclamation activities. At one time, over 3,000 tons a week were being reclaimed for a non-prime market which was world-wide. The demand for non-prime materials has been declining with many large stockholders installing their own cut up lines and ordering coils instead of sheets. All non prime material is now being processed in the CA Bay in the Marsh Department and the Top Yard salvage buildings will be used for warehousing.