1. ITV Report

First slabs of steel produced on Teesside

The blast furnace at sunset Photo: ITV

The first slab of Teesside steel to be made in more than two years should be ready later after the blast furnace at Redcar was relit on Sunday.

The ceremony at the weekend signalled the start the production process, with the inside of the tower heated to more than 1200 degrees.

  • Molten iron ore is produced by the blast furnace
  • The iron then goes into production and becomes plate steel
  • The majority of the steel will then be exported to Asia

1500 workers are now employed directly by SSI, the Thai firm which bought the former Corus plant last year.

See how the blast furnace works:

"The opportunity that Teesside and Teessiders like me have been given is a dream come true. SSI's investment and show of confidence in Teesside is just fantastic. Everybody here is committed to repaying that and showing what Teesside steel can do and what Teessiders are capable of."

– John Baker, SSI

More on this story

  • Forging more than steel

    It's hoped the decision by the Thai steel maker to come to the North East could encourage many more companies to do the same.