Unprotected steelworker with molten iron, Workington, 1952.
© NMeM / Walter Nurnberg / Science & Society Picture Library
A batch of molten iron pours down an inclined sand lined channel after leaving the blast furnace. A worker without any protection against the intense heat, uses a rod to keep the flow clear of slag. Photographed at the Mos Bay works of the Workington Iron and Steel Company which opened in 1856. The plant drew on abundant local resources : Cumberland coal from the mines and water from the River Derwent. Workington specialised in steel railway lines and thousands of miles were produced for export and use by the UK rail network . Workington Iron and Steel closed in 1981. Photograph by Walter Nurnberg, who transformed industrial photography after WWII by using film studio lighting techniques.