Steel memorial bid gets a cash boost

South Lanarkshire Council, Almada Street, Hamilton. Council handing over �5,000 cheque to Steelworkers Memorial Fund. (L) Councillor Russell Clearie representing South Lanarkshire Council, Gilbert Cox from North Lanarkshire
South Lanarkshire Council, Almada Street, Hamilton. Council handing over �5,000 cheque to Steelworkers Memorial Fund. (L) Councillor Russell Clearie representing South Lanarkshire Council, Gilbert Cox from North Lanarkshire

The campaign to have a permanent memorial erected to workers who died in the Scottish steel industry got a £5,000 boost this week.

South Lanarkshire Council handed over the donation to trustees of the Scottish Steelworkers’ Memorial Fund who are hoping to erect the memorial on the site of the former Ravenscraig plant.

The fund was launched last year and is co-ordinated through the Supercounty civic pride campaign.

Fund treasurer Gilbert Cox said: “We are absolutely delighted that South Lanarkshire Council has agreed to support the campaign for a memorial.

“There were many thousands of people working in the steel industry who came from South Lanarkshire so there is a great history of the area’s involvement with different steelworks.

“In fact it’s been said there were as many people who worked at Ravenscraig from Hamilton as there were from Motherwell. There were also a lot of small companies from South Lanarkshire who got an economic spin-off from the steel industry.”

South Lanarkshire councillor Russell Clearie, who worked at the Clydebridge steel plant for 42 years, handed over the cheque.

He said that with so much of South Lanarkshire involved in and affected by the steel industry, the council felt it was essential to back the move to create a monument.

He said: “In my time there were always fatalities in the steelworks and it is very right and proper that a monument should be erected to honour all those who lost their lives and also as a reminder to everyone of the dominant effect and lasting legacy that the steel industry had across Lanarkshire.”