Thamesteel Steel Works, Sheerness, UK

Thamesteel Steel Works, Sheerness

Opening in 1972 the steelworks in Sheerness incorporated steel production furnaces and a large rolling mill. The site closed in 2012.

Visited March 2015 Sheerness, Kent, UK Abandoned

History of Thamesteel, Sheerness

Land on the Isle of Sheppy was acquired in 1968 by the Sheerness Steel Company and work on a steelworks began. Built within the Garrison Town surrounding Sherness Naval Dockyard, the first steel was produced in 1972 and production continued for the next thirty years.

In 2003 the site was sold and the new owners invested heavily into Thamesteel, revitalising the production facilities and rolling mill. A new 95 tonne Fuchs UHP Electric Arc Furnace was installed, replacing the original blast furnace and enabling the recycling of scrap steel, followed by two in-line ladle furnaces to refine the steel before continually casting into billet. The new furnace and further investment in 2006 in a 4 station continuous casting machine increased production from 750,000 to 1 million tonnes.

A large 18 stand rolling mill rolled the billets into straight bar rounds and rebar. In turn this was fed into a 10 stand rod finishing block. The resultant round or ribbed steel rods were then cooled and if necessary, coiled. [1]

Thamesteel Sheerness - The large site viewed from the road
Thamesteel Sheerness – The large site viewed from the road

By the late 2010s the company was experiencing financial difficulties and the threat of closure was realised. A number of measures were put in place to try to save the steelworks but in 2012 negative conditions in the market sealed its fate. The plant closed making all 350 staff redundant.

Talk of the plant reopening continues, but with 250 outstanding unfair dismissal claims to be resolved first, a £3.5 million bill served on the land-owners to remove contaminated waste from the site and the deteriorating state of the structure, re-opening looks very unlikely. [2]

Electric Arc Furnace Platform

Thamesteel Sheerness - Flooded with colourful light
Thamesteel Sheerness – Flooded with colourful light
Thamesteel Sheerness - Huge industrial platforms
Thamesteel Sheerness – Huge industrial platforms
Thamesteel Sheerness - Work areas
Thamesteel Sheerness – Work areas
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Sunlight and silo
Thamesteel Sheerness – Sunlight and silo
Thamesteel Sheerness - The early morning sun illuminates an electromagnet
Thamesteel Sheerness – The early morning sun illuminates an electromagnet
Thamesteel Sheerness - Electric Arc furnace control room
Thamesteel Sheerness – Electric Arc furnace control room
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Electric Arc furnace work space
Thamesteel Sheerness – Electric Arc furnace work space
Thamesteel Sheerness - Electric Arc Furnace ladle
Thamesteel Sheerness – Electric Arc Furnace ladle

Forging and Casting House

Thamesteel Sheerness - View of casting house from the crane
Thamesteel Sheerness – View of casting house from the crane
Thamesteel Sheerness - Platforms in the casting house
Thamesteel Sheerness – Platforms in the casting house
Thamesteel Sheerness - Lids and platforms
Thamesteel Sheerness – Lids and platforms
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Huts and cabins
Thamesteel Sheerness – Huts and cabins
Thamesteel Sheerness - View from ground level
Thamesteel Sheerness – View from ground level
Thamesteel Sheerness - Mid-section viewed from above
Thamesteel Sheerness – Mid-section viewed from above
Thamesteel Sheerness - Selfie in the crane
Thamesteel Sheerness – Selfie in the crane
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Work areas
Thamesteel Sheerness – Work areas
Thamesteel Sheerness - Lower view of the forging area
Thamesteel Sheerness – Lower view of the forging area
Thamesteel Sheerness - Huge machine
Thamesteel Sheerness – Huge machine
Thamesteel Sheerness - Light rays
Thamesteel Sheerness – Light rays
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Masses of machinery
Thamesteel Sheerness – Masses of machinery
Thamesteel Sheerness - Ladle on crawler transporter in the casting pit
Thamesteel Sheerness – Ladle on crawler transporter in the casting pit
Thamesteel Sheerness - Ladle in rotating platform
Thamesteel Sheerness – Ladle in rotating platform
Thamesteel Sheerness - Ladle on transporter
Thamesteel Sheerness – Ladle on transporter
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Lots of ladles
Thamesteel Sheerness – Lots of ladles
Thamesteel Sheerness - View from crane lifting one of the huge ladles
Thamesteel Sheerness – View from crane lifting one of the huge ladles
Thamesteel Sheerness - Tipped ladle and mound of material
Thamesteel Sheerness – Tipped ladle and mound of material
Thamesteel Sheerness - Ladle and crane hook
Thamesteel Sheerness – Ladle and crane hook
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Ladle in archway
Thamesteel Sheerness – Ladle in archway
Thamesteel Sheerness - Huge ladle in archway above water-filled track
Thamesteel Sheerness – Huge ladle in archway above water-filled track

Molten Steel Trucks

Thamesteel Sheerness - Sun bursts in behind a truck for carrying molten steel
Thamesteel Sheerness – Sun bursts in behind a truck for carrying molten steel
Thamesteel Sheerness - Parked in a station
Thamesteel Sheerness – Parked in a station
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Trucks ready for use
Thamesteel Sheerness – Trucks ready for use
Thamesteel Sheerness - Large digger parked up
Thamesteel Sheerness – Large digger parked up

Rolling Mill

Thamesteel Sheerness - Part of the 18 Stand Rolling Mill
Thamesteel Sheerness – Part of the 18 Stand Rolling Mill
Thamesteel Sheerness - Machines for rolling billets into straight bar rounds and rebar
Thamesteel Sheerness – Machines for rolling billets into straight bar rounds and rebar
Thamesteel Sheerness - Rolling Mill
Thamesteel Sheerness – Rolling Mill
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Control room
Thamesteel Sheerness – Control room
Thamesteel Sheerness - Computerised control room for the rolling mill
Thamesteel Sheerness – Computerised control room for the rolling mill
Thamesteel Sheerness - Cooling conveyor
Thamesteel Sheerness – Cooling conveyor
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Cooling conveyor
Thamesteel Sheerness – Cooling conveyor
Thamesteel Sheerness - Light beams above the conveyors used for cooling finished bar
Thamesteel Sheerness – Light beams above the conveyors used for cooling finished bar
Thamesteel Sheerness - Tracks and pumps
Thamesteel Sheerness – Tracks and pumps
Thamesteel Sheerness - Conveyor tracks
Thamesteel Sheerness – Conveyor tracks
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Small control pulpit
Thamesteel Sheerness – Small control pulpit
Thamesteel Sheerness - Clipboard on control panel
Thamesteel Sheerness – Clipboard on control panel
Thamesteel Sheerness - Inside control room
Thamesteel Sheerness – Inside control room
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Control pulpit
Thamesteel Sheerness – Control pulpit
Thamesteel Sheerness - Light beams in finishing area
Thamesteel Sheerness – Light beams in finishing area
Thamesteel Sheerness - Milling machines
Thamesteel Sheerness – Milling machines
Thamesteel Sheerness - Milling machine
Thamesteel Sheerness – Milling machine
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Machinery
Thamesteel Sheerness – Machinery
Thamesteel Sheerness - Machinery in the rolling mill
Thamesteel Sheerness – Machinery in the rolling mill

Around the rest of the site

Thamesteel Sheerness - Offices
Thamesteel Sheerness – Offices
Thamesteel Sheerness - Research Lab
Thamesteel Sheerness – Research Lab
 
Thamesteel Sheerness - Exhaust ducts
Thamesteel Sheerness – Exhaust ducts
Thamesteel Sheerness - On top of the cooling towers
Thamesteel Sheerness – On top of the cooling towers
Thamesteel Sheerness - Arc Furnace Ladles outside
Thamesteel Sheerness – Arc Furnace Ladles outside

References

1. Source: http://www.kenthistoryforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=2479.0
2. Source: http://www.morton-fraser.com/knowledge-hub/tale-landlord-tenant-and-two-types-waste

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