A consultation on how best to capture and celebrate the history of the former Redcar steelworks site, which has been central to Teesside’s long and rich iron and steelmaking heritage, is set to move on to its second phase after receiving more than 170 responses from local people.
The current online public consultation will close on 30 November.
A second stage of consultation will also take place, including engagement with a wide range of local organisations, some of whom have already been in touch with the taskforce.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen established the independent taskforce in September, ahead of a £150million programme of demolition and remediation works planned for the site.
Since then the taskforce, co-chaired by Redcar MP Jacob Young and Kate Willard OBE, who has a wealth of experience in heritage and the arts, has been reviewing the responses from the public along with the other taskforce members, former SSI UK PR & Media Director John Baker and Teesside steel historian Dr Tosh Warwick.
Jacob Young MP said: “Our people are rightly proud of the contribution that they and their families have made in the iron and steel industry, with their expertise and hard work promoting Teesside around the world.
“We have a fantastic opportunity with the Teesworks site to do that again, revitalising industry and manufacturing bringing with it new job opportunities for generations to come.
“At the same time, we also want to recognise the significant contribution of the steelworks site and its workers, and properly commemorate this era of our history.
“Thank you to everyone who has sent in their comments so far. We’ve had some really great suggestions and they will form part of our ongoing overall considerations.
“As a taskforce we’re looking forward to this second stage where we’ll be able to refine some of the ideas and start to shape our final recommendations.”
Kate Willard OBE said: “We have had so many really thoughtful and detailed responses – all of which will be fed into the Taskforce’s deliberations. We are listening to what people have to say. And it’s beautiful to see the real pride and passion in so many of the responses we have had to date.
“The importance of being able to value and share this powerful heritage for future generations cannot be overstated. It has shaped so many individuals and communities over many, many decades.
“We are approaching the end of the first stage of our consultation but would urge people who may not yet have spoken to us to submit suggestions so we can take into account as many views as possible.”
To have your say on the consultation, visit teesworks.co.uk/heritage/