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Government under fire as Redcar coke ovens and blast furnace to shut

The coke ovens and blast furnace at SSI steel works plant in Redcar, Teesside, are to close, as no viable offers have been put forward by potential buyers, the firm's official receiver has said.

The government has come under fire from MPs, local councillors and union leaders, who accuse ministers of failing to act to save the plant.

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'No viable offers' to save Redcar steelworks plant

The coke ovens and blast furnace at SSI steel works plant in Redcar, Teesside, are to close, as no viable offers have been put forward by potential buyers, the firm's official receiver has said.

SSI was wound up by the High Court in Manchester on 2 October 2015 at the company’s request, and receiver Ken Beasley was appointed by the court.

SSI was wound up at the start of October Credit: PA

Since then, Mr Beasley has maintained the site to ensure it remains safe while discussions with potential buyers took place, as he said SSI had "substantial debts" and no funds to purchase teh coal necessary to keep the ovens operational.

But in a statement today, he said he could no longer justify using public money to keep the site open.

There is no realistic prospect of a buyer being found and the priority now is to close the ovens down safely.

I cannot continue to draw on taxpayers funds to keep the ovens operational when there is no realistic prospect that a buyer will be found.

I am continuing my liquidation of the company, including talking with interested parties about purchasing the company’s other assets.

– Ken Beasley, official receiver

Some staff will be kept on while the site shuts down, he added, but said the number "will decline" as this progresses.

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