Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 143,374 pages of information and 230,039 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.
1983 Johnson and Firth Brown's Sheffield works and British Steel's River Don Works were amalgamated to form the jointly owned private sector company, Sheffield Forgemasters, employing 6,500 people. Within three years and despite an annual turnover of £100m, the company recorded losses of approximately £20m per annum.
1984 Shareholders of Forgemasters wrote off their investments, fired the entire board and brought in new management and a survival plan.
1987 With British Steel due for privatisation in 1987, Sheffield Forgemasters's management agreed a management buy-out. The company's success through the next decade bucked the trend by dramatic increases in export sales. Queen's Awards for Technology and Export were also received.
1998 Sheffield Forgemasters was sold in two parts to American buyers - the aerospace business to Allegheny Teledyne, and the River Don and Rolls businesses to Atchison Castings. The River Don business subsequently returned to British ownership, and remains so (2020).