Blast furnace worker's jacket, 1981.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Protective furnace worker's jacket made by British Steel. A furnaceman's clothes must shield him from the heat and not catch fire if touched by a flame. Wool has been a popular material for such clothing for many years. The fabric is pleasant to wear allowing the skin to breathe and also absorbs sweat. It is a good insulator and scorches or smoulders instead of bursting into flames.