Liberty Steel Newport

Liberty Steel Newport

Not very well known and surprisingly the second most modern hot strip mill in Europe is located in Newport, a seaside town in south east Wales.
The mini-mill with two electric arc furnaces and a rolling mill was put into operation in 1974 by the Greek-Swiss company called Alphasteel.
But the first troubles showed up pretty soon. The verdict of the European Steel Plan from early 80´s was clear - to reduce the production capacity of hot rolled strip in the UK, namely in Ravenscraig and Newport.

Thus, Alphasteel sold its rights to British Steel and the hot strip mill was shutdown in 1985. However not for good.

The greek owner of Alphasteel, Theodore Angelopoulos, did not want to let his hot mill go so easily just after 10 years of operation and decided to relocate to Indiana in the United States. A new company called Betasteel was founded and the hot strip mill started running in 1991.

Meanwhile, the fuss around the steel production capacities regulation in Europe was almost over, and Angelopoulos decided to built an identical hot strip mill in the derelicted site in Newport. The brand new copy of the old mill was launched 2000. But this action caught the attention of the media and former creditors soon after and as the result the Alphasteel was taken over by swiss company Satico Ltd. in 2003.

After the bankrupcy in 2007 a russian oligarch Vadim Varshavsky bought the entire production site. Nevertheless his newly established company Mir Steel wasn´t going well either and the site closed down again.

Finally the works were bought by Sanjeev Gupta in 2013 and after several upgrades the plant is running well since 2015 under the flag of Liberty Steel.

Keywords: united kingdom, liberty steel, south wales, newport, alphasteel, Angelopoulos, sanjeev gupta, hot strip mill, steelworks, walzwerk, valcovna, rolling mill, industrial photography, industriekultur, industrialni fotograf, beautyofsteel

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