Which area of Britain would be most similar to the American Rust-belt? Watch

HonestBob
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#1
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The American rust-belt is a geographical region centred aroun the Great Lakes that once was home to most of America's heavy industries such as steel, automobiles, machine tools, petrol-chemical refining, foundries, forges and machine shops. Most of this heavy industry has left America for the developing nations in Asia and Latin America, however, the remnants of abandoned steel mills and boarded up car factories are everywhere. Cities such as Buffalo, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Toledo and Chicago are the major urban centres of this region. It was NOT an area where non-durable goods like textiles were manufactured in great abundance, so i doubt Manchester or the North West of England would equate. However, I believe the West Midlands or the North East might be our Rust-Belt. Which of those two regions fits best, do you think?
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Toaster Leavings
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I'd go for South Wales. Though I'd say Sheffield, Teeside, Tyneside, Black Country and Glasgow are pretty hot contenders.
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Classical Liberal
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West Midlands.
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ForKicks
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Black Country (historically of course)
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Joinedup
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Sheffield lost a lot of heavy industry, but it's recovered quite well. The former steel milling areas of scotland still look pretty desolate though imo.

There's some enormous post industrial slate tips in north wales, visitors sometime don't realise they're not natural hills.
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Dodge-Slant-6
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#6
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South Yorkshire, the North East, or the West Midlands......It's a toss up.
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Rakas21
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The UK cities have recovered much better than cities like Detroit in the US, indeed Manchester, Leeds and Nottingham are probably better off than ever.

The North East has recovered the least though.
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The Free Radical
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The Black Country

It's a dirt whole there tbh ^
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Dodge-Slant-6
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(Original post by Rakas21)
The UK cities have recovered much better than cities like Detroit in the US, indeed Manchester, Leeds and Nottingham are probably better off than ever.

The North East has recovered the least though.
Yeah, but cities like Manchester, Leeds and Nottingham were not built on 'heavy industry'. They were textile cities, which make them a far cry from cities that were dependent on steel, motor cars, machine tools, etc.

I would never compare Manchester or Leeds to Detroit or Buffalo. Detroit was built on cars and Buffalo was one of the largest steel centres in the world. The only cities that we have which would come anywhere close to these industrial behemoths would be Coventry for cars and Sheffield for steel, both of which are no longer manufactured in either city.

Consequently, I don't see anywhere in the North West, West Yorkshire or East Midlands even remotely close to a 'British Rust Belt'. The closest we have/had to a rust belt, complete with a large amount of dirty, heavy industry would either be South Yorkshire or the West Midlands. You can make an argument for the North east too, but it was never as densely populated as South Yorkshire or the West Midlands which are both just as populated as the Great American Rust Belt when scaled for population differences between the USA and the UK.

Sheffield and Birmingham both feel like industrial cities, albeit in a post-industrial age. Manchester and Leeds just seem like 19th century textile and wool spinning towns, not much in the way of heavy, dirty industry like steel and cars ever being built in these cities.
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Rakas21
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(Original post by Dodge-Slant-6)
Yeah, but cities like Manchester, Leeds and Nottingham were not built on 'heavy industry'. They were textile cities, which make them a far cry from cities that were dependent on steel, motor cars, machine tools, etc.

I would never compare Manchester or Leeds to Detroit or Buffalo. Detroit was built on cars and Buffalo was one of the largest steel centres in the world. The only cities that we have which would come anywhere close to these industrial behemoths would be Coventry for cars and Sheffield for steel, both of which are no longer manufactured in either city.

Consequently, I don't see anywhere in the North West, West Yorkshire or East Midlands even remotely close to a 'British Rust Belt'. The closest we have/had to a rust belt, complete with a large amount of dirty, heavy industry would either be South Yorkshire or the West Midlands. You can make an argument for the North east too, but it was never as densely populated as South Yorkshire or the West Midlands which are both just as populated as the Great American Rust Belt when scaled for population differences between the USA and the UK.

Sheffield and Birmingham both feel like industrial cities, albeit in a post-industrial age. Manchester and Leeds just seem like 19th century textile and wool spinning towns, not much in the way of heavy, dirty industry like steel and cars ever being built in these cities.
Fair enough. I wasn't all that much sure what they made industrially through the post war period.
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Skip_Snip
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Is Billy Elliot set in Durham? I'd guess there, because it was a community built around mining?
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Dodge-Slant-6
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Yes, but is mining the same as manufacturing? No, mining is retrieving raw materials out of the earth. A Rust Belt is an area which includes mining, yes, because it normally is centred near heavy manufacturing, but an area that is exclusively devoted to mining without manufacturing I wouldn't call a Rust Belt city.

Rust Belt cities are cities associated with the manufacture of steel and products made from steel, such as motor cars, car parts, machine tools, etc. In Britain, the top contenders for such a designation, I think, would be Sheffield and the surrounding South Yorkshire industrial towns such as Rotherham; Birmingham and its satellite industrial towns in the surrounding West Midlands Black Country, such as Wolverhampton and West Bromwich; and maybe Middlesbrough and Redcar in the the North East of England. Any of these three (3) areas would get my vote for being the buckle of the British Rust Belt.
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