Seraing / 2006, 2009, 2010, 2013 / COCKERILL-SAMBRE (HF6)
The first coke blast furnace in continental Europe was introduced in the 1820s by the Englishman John Cockerill, who established his ironworks in Seraing, near the Belgian city of Liège. Since then, the region developed rapidly into a major iron and steelmaking centre, in the wake of the exploitation of local coal deposits. Still relevant in the mid 20th century, the Liège steel industry began to loose ground in the late 1970s and consequently heavily downsized. Foundries were closed and blast furnaces dismantled. With the closure of the last active sites, in recent years, steelmaking in the Liège area becomes, indeed, history.