Sheffield Forgemasters is set to build a new 144,000 sq ft facility at its South Yorkshire site to house a new 13,000-tonne forging press as part of a £400 million investment programme.

The origins of Sheffield Forgemasters date back to the 1750s as a small blacksmith forge.

George Naylor set up the foundations for the business as a commercial operation with the building of the Millsands Steelworks in 1805. His son in law, Edward Vickers, later joined forces with him to form Naylor Vickers and Co..

Since then the company has been associated  with many famous steel industry names such as English Steel, Firth Brown, British Steel and River Don Castings.

Sheffield Forgemasters is now capable of producing the largest and most technically challenging cast and forged steel components in the world.

The company has this week lodged plans for the construction of a building to house its new large forging press submitting a full planning application to Sheffield City Council for development at its site on Brightside Lane.

Planning permission is sought for the construction of a new 144,000 sq ft structure on the site of its existing forge building, alongside the new forge, the development would include offices and a water pumping station.

The new building, which forms part of a significant investment programme, would accommodate a new 13,000-tonne forging press capable of pressing larger ingots.

A target date of 2025 has been set for the completion of works and the new forge press to be in operation.

A planning statement submitted as part of the application said: “The proposed development represents the first stage in a significant investment for Sheffield Forgemasters.”

This investment will safeguard a historic business within one of Sheffield’s historic industries, which has played a significant part in the growth of the city.

In the immediate term, the development will deliver significant investment in the local economy and secure over 600 skilled jobs while laying the foundation for future investment to allow further modernisation of Sheffield Forgemasters’ facilities.

The benefits of the proposed development are considered to be significant for the economy of Sheffield and given the company’s position at the forefront of the steel industry in the UK, these benefits will be important to the national economy.

Sheffield Forgemasters currently employs more than 600 staff in the city, including about 100 graduates and 60 apprentices. The company was acquired by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) last year.

Two enabling developments have previously been approved covering temporary construction site access as well as the partial demolition of the existing forge building and erection of new heat shield walls.

The project team includes JLL, AEW Architects and Tetra Tech.

Photo credit: Sheffield Forgemasters


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