Forth boost for steelworks

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STEEL processed in Motherwell will be used in the new £1.6 billion Forth Bridge.

Darlington-based Cleveland Bridge has won a contract to supply huge steel girders to support the viaducts at either end of the 1.7 mile long, three tower, cable-stayed structure.

And they have signed a deal for Tata to supply the steel from its Motherwell and Scunthorpe plants.

Motherwell and Wishaw MSP John Pentland was delighted by the news.

He said: “This is clearly good news for the Darlington firm, but it is also good news for workers at the Dalzell steel plant in Motherwell, since the steel for the contract will be supplied by Tata from their plants in Motherwell and Scunthorpe.

“It is good to see some of the work from the bridge finally coming to UK steel industry rather than Spain, Poland and China as with the main contract, and especially good that some of the work will be undertaken by Scottish steel plants.

“It is a pity that the SNP government did not use its procurement powers to ensure that more orders went directly to Scottish firms.”

While also welcoming the news, Central Scotland MSP Clare Adamson argues it is misleading that Scottish firm have not already been benefitting from the new bridge.

She said: “This is excellent news for Motherwell and sends out a fresh reminder of just how important the massive Forth development is to all of Scotland.

“Over 300 Scottish firms have already benefited from subcontracts and 1,200 people are employed on site. Tata is yet another Scottish based business benefiting from the supply chain for the bridge.

“If Labour had their way and scrapped construction there would be no benefits to Motherwell at all.

“The FRC is an absolutely essential project for Scotland’s infrastructure, sustainable economic growth and will continue to create thousands more jobs for Scottish people before it opens to traffic in 2016.”