Steelworker Martin Haslock says a year of steelmaking has been a boost for Teesside.
He lost his job when the plant was mothballed in 2010 but came back when the blast furnace was relit.
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Durham Crown Court heard how Sarah Louise Fettis approached the woman after spotting her in a pub and began shouting and swearing at her.
A judge said adoption would give the baby the "best prospect" of growing up in a "safe and secure" way.
41-year-old Jayne Maughan from Middlesbrough used the £15,500 to fund her spending habits.