Sat Oct 24th 2015

Around three hundred marched from The Square to The Nab
for a torchlit tribute to history and hope for the future...
The atmosphere was emotionally charged. A heady mix of sorrow and anger alongside proud celebration. At the Nab, torches fittingly lit up the Beacon monument before the crowd lined the cliff edge for synchonised torches switching on and off for all of Teesside to see. Craig Hornby gave a speech on behalf of FOEH and then introduced the two MPs, Anna Turley & Tom Blenkinsop who have been working non-stop and lobbying the government since the steelworks closure was announced last month. Dave Mackin perfomed The Last Post before a minute's silence was held. Finally a symbolic single firework shot up into the night sky making quite a bang!

FOEH would like to thanks all the media who covered it: Press Photographer Ian Forsyth, BBC Look North, BBC Tees, Northern Echo, The Gazette, Zetland FM and Stephen Moss of The Guardian who climbed with us all the way to the top. Thanks to everybody who took part and made it such a memorable and unique event. Thanks to bugler David Mackin and to G2 Fireworks for donating the rocket. AND last but not least - to Sheila Nesbitt for the brilliant idea to do this in the first place!
Pics By Ian Forsyth, The Guardian, Jan Lindberg and Dom Prest.
Craig's Speech in full...

"We have climbed to the top of these hills - where the story really began - to mark the end of an epic era - a 175 years of Teesside iron and steel. We are here to pay our respects to a great industry that has passed. Unless there is a miracle at this the 13th hour. To the great industrial visionaries - Bolckow, Vaughan, Pease, Bell, Dorman and Long and the many more too numerous to mention. Their enterprise impacted the world as it did our families - providing work for generations of our forefathers. And we pay our respects to them, whose labour, sweat, blood and sacrifice powered this industry through good times and bad, through two world wars, through the great depression of the 1930s to the great decline of the 1980s. To its sad and bitter end in 2015. We will never forget".

"We have climbed these hills also to inspire hope, solidarity and strength for uncertain times ahead. To let those who have just lost their jobs and their families know that they are in the thoughts of many. The last blast furnace may have been blown out but the lights across this community have not. And we stand here now, 794 ft above Teesside, as proof. So let our Eston Beacon of hope shine across this land for all to see".


"The Flame Still Burns"

It began with a miner lighting a squib,
That sparked an explosion,
Of 40 pits and 10,000 men,
that yielded the stone for a hundred years,
that fed a hundred furnace fires,
And the families of 40,000 men,
That tapped the iron,
That made the steel,
That spanned rivers, harbours and continents
And still does.
The Redcar blast is cold,
But the flame still burns,
Forever in Teesside hearts.

CH 2015.





"Let our Eston Beacon of hope shine
Across this land for all to see !"