Tees

Hundreds mourn Redcar steelworks closure with torch-lit procession

People hold torches atop Eston Nab Image copyright Jan Lindberg
Image caption About 300 people marched to the top of Eston Nab to pay tribute to the Redcar steelworks and those who have lost their jobs

Hundreds of people have climbed a Teesside hill to mourn the loss of the Redcar steelworks.

About 300 people formed a torch-lit procession up Eston Nab to show their support for the 2,000 workers who lost their jobs when the plant closed.

Local MPs said they were paying respect to the area's industrial heritage and "keeping the lights burning" for future works.

The plant closed due to a global slump in the price of steel.

Image copyright Jan Lindberg
Image caption Organisers said it was an emotional march

Craig Hornby, the leader of the Friends of Eston Hills, which organised the march, said it was "emotional".

He told BBC Tees: "It's for all those who have lost their jobs and to say though the light has gone out at the furnace, the lights haven't gone out across the community."

Image copyright Jan Lindberg
Image caption MP Tom Blenkinsop said the gathering was an opportunity to grieve

Labour's Anna Turley, MP for Redcar, said: "It is an opportunity for the community to come together to pay respect and tribute to the history and heritage and the generations who came before us to dig the iron ore from hills to forge the steel that built the modern world."

Tom Blenkinsop, Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, said: "It's another way of allowing people to grieve because losing the steel industry in the area is like a death in a family.

"There is still a positive, we want to fight and make the case for industry in the area, keeping that light alive and fighting to use that site, possibly for steel production in the future."

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