HFX Blast Furnaces and Steel Works, France

A huge abandoned steel works in France with three blast furnaces and a railway station full of wagons.

HFX Blast Furnaces and Steelworks, France
 

Newsletter!

Enter your details to receive my newsletter (about twice a year)

The late nineteenth century saw rapid developments in the production of iron. Areas with an abundance of iron ore benefitted from the expanding industry and large plants were constructed. HFX is one such example, with massive expansion taking place in the early twentieth century. The first blast furnaces were built at the site in 1906, and later a huge steel works to convert the iron into steel.

In total, six blast furnaces were built at the site. During the 1970s three of the six blast furnaces were refurbished, and their capacities increased. The other three furnaces were decommissioned and later demolished.

Workers at the blast furnaces, pictured in 1952

Share this image to Facebook

Workers at the blast furnaces, pictured in 1952

One of the oldest remaining parts of the site is a huge hall with 1919 emblazoned above the main entrance, which now contains a set of turbo-blowers for injecting high-pressure air into the blast furnaces. The hall would have originally contained an array of classic industrial machinery including mechanical blowers and alternators similar to those found at Power Plant X in Luxembourg. Electricity generation on the site ceased in the 1950s when Richemont Power Station took over, running on the blast furnace gasses produced by a number of steel works in the region.

Production of iron and steel ceased in 2012 when the last remaining blast furnaces at the site were mothballed. It was announced the two blast furnaces would be maintained so they could be restarted if market conditions improved in the future, but were permanently shut down the following year.

The blast furnaces and steelworks while they were in use

Share this image to Facebook

The blast furnaces and steelworks while they were in use

Now, the steel works and blast furnaces lay dormant, slowly rusting and being reclaimed by nature. Wagons stand still in the rail yard surrounded by overgrowth, the steel works silent and the furnaces lifeless.

Blast Furnaces

HFX Steelworks, France - Blast Furnaces viewed from the rail yard

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Blast Furnaces viewed from the rail yard

HFX Steelworks, France - Coal wagons lined up below the blast furnaces

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Coal wagons lined up below the blast furnaces

HFX Steelworks, France - Base of one of the blast furnaces

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Base of one of the blast furnaces

HFX Steelworks, France - Inside a blast furnace building

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Inside a blast furnace building

HFX Steelworks, France - Inside another blast furnace building

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Inside another blast furnace building

HFX Steelworks, France - Spiral staircase

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Spiral staircase

HFX Steelworks, France - Water tower

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Water tower

HFX Steelworks, France - View up a blast furnace

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – View up a blast furnace

HFX Steelworks, France - Wagons under a blast furnace

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Wagons under a blast furnace

HFX Steelworks, France - Blast furnace control room

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Blast furnace control room

Turbo Blower House and Workshops

The blower house is where the turbo-fans are located. They were responsible for blowing the huge amounts of air required by the blast furnaces. This cavernous building would have once housed a set of classic engines for blowing the air, along with a power plant, all of which was removed in the 1970s.

HFX Steelworks, France - Turbo-fan sets 1 and 2

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Turbo-fan sets 1 and 2

HFX Steelworks, France - There was one blower set for each blast furnace

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – There was one blower set for each blast furnace

HFX Steelworks, France - Side view of the huge blowers

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Side view of the huge blowers

HFX Steelworks, France - Turbo-fan 3

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Turbo-fan 3

HFX Steelworks, France - The green motor for fan 3

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – The green motor for fan 3

HFX Steelworks, France - Historic control panel from when older machines were used

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Historic control panel from when older machines were used

HFX Steelworks, France - The machines this panel controlled were removed a long time ago

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – The machines this panel controlled were removed a long time ago

HFX Steelworks, France - Newer control room for the turbo-blowers

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Newer control room for the turbo-blowers

HFX Steelworks, France - Turbo-blower control room

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Turbo-blower control room

HFX Steelworks, France - Workshop area

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Workshop area

HFX Steelworks, France - Workshops

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Workshops

HFX Steelworks, France - Locker room

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Locker room

Railway and Coal / Iron Ore Delivery Area

The steelworks had its own station for the delivery of coal and raw materials such as iron ore which would be emptied into hoppers below. A lot of wagons are parked on the tracks.

HFX Steelworks, France - Track over the coal and iron ore hoppers with blast furnaces behind

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Track over the coal and iron ore hoppers with blast furnaces behind

HFX Steelworks, France - Wagons parked in the delivery station

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Wagons parked in the delivery station

HFX Steelworks, France - Nature is starting to reclaim the tracks

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Nature is starting to reclaim the tracks

HFX Steelworks, France - Blast furnace and wagons

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Blast furnace and wagons

HFX Steelworks, France - Trains would drop their content directly into the hoppers below

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Trains would drop their content directly into the hoppers below

Steel works

The steelworks took the pig iron produced by the blast furnaces and converted into steel.

Historic photos of the steelworks, pictured in 1952

Share this image to Facebook

Historic photos of the steelworks, pictured in 1952

HFX Steelworks, France - Sign in the steelworks

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Sign in the steelworks

HFX Steelworks, France - View along one of the many long sections

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – View along one of the many long sections

HFX Steelworks, France - View down the steelworks

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – View down the steelworks

HFX Steelworks, France - View in the opposite direction

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – View in the opposite direction

HFX Steelworks, France - Work area between machinery

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Work area between machinery

HFX Steelworks, France - Ladles lined up in the ladle bay

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Ladles lined up in the ladle bay

HFX Steelworks, France - One of the ladles tipped up

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – One of the ladles tipped up

HFX Steelworks, France - Wider view of the ladles

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Wider view of the ladles

HFX Steelworks, France - One of the work bays

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – One of the work bays

HFX Steelworks, France - Another work bay

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Another work bay

HFX Steelworks, France - Crane lowered in one of the bays

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Crane lowered in one of the bays

HFX Steelworks, France - Furnaces for melting iron and scrap

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Furnaces for melting iron and scrap

HFX Steelworks, France - Track for moving ladles

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Track for moving ladles

HFX Steelworks, France - Electromagnetic lifting gear

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Electromagnetic lifting gear

Rolling Mill

The mill is where the steel products are finished off and rolled or shaped into their final forms.

HFX Steelworks, France - Plant in the rolling mill

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Plant in the rolling mill

HFX Steelworks, France - Plant in the rolling mill

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Plant in the rolling mill

HFX Steelworks, France - Lifting gear in the mill

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Lifting gear in the mill

HFX Steelworks, France - Crane hooks in the mill

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Crane hooks in the mill

HFX Steelworks, France - Tracks leading to mill equipment

Share this image to Facebook

HFX Steelworks, France – Tracks leading to mill equipment

Like and Share

Please support me if you liked this article. It's just a click...


Related Articles:


Leave a reply