1. ITV Report

Politician describes Rotherham as the 'forgotten town' of steel crisis

A general view of the Tata Steel LPB, Thrybergh Mill, Rotherham, Yorkshire Credit: Press Association

A Labour politician has described Rotherham as the 'forgotten town' of the steel crisis, arguing that if the town's Tata plant were to close it would have a 'huge impact' on the council's finances.

Speaking to ITV Calendar, John Healey said Tata is the biggest single business rates payer in Rotherham, contributing more than £3m per year to the council's budget.

"If the worst comes to the worst and we do lose our steel plant it'll knock a big hole in the council's finances."

– John Healey MP
John Healey warned the collapse of Rotherham's steel industry would leave a 'black hole' in the council's finances Credit: Press Association

Criticising the Government for 'dragging its feet' over the last few months, the Wentworth and Dearne MP warned that the closure of the steelworks would lead to deeper cuts or an increase in council tax rates. He added that he believes it would be incumbent on the Government to fill the gap.

'There's too much for us to lose in Rotherham if we lose our steel industry'

– John Healey MP

The comments come a day after Business Minister Anna Soubry visited the town yesterday, which has already been hit by hundreds of redundancies in the past month.

More on this story