In 1991, as the town of Motherwell faced the crippling social, economic and cultural impact of the closure of the Ravenscraig steelworks, its football club, locally known as the Steelmen, lifted the prestigious Scottish Cup for the first time in 39 years. The victory was a glimmer of light in the ensuing darkness.

Broadcast on BBC ALBA in 2019.

Steelmen is the bittersweet story of a Scottish town embracing unbridled joy. In 1991, Motherwell Football Club won the Scottish Cup. The victory was hugely significant, it was the first time the club had won the trophy since 1952. This triumph though was set against the backdrop of the threatened closure of Ravenscraig, the local steelworks that was a significant source of employment and interdependent local business throughout the area. As the season progressed the footballing highs provided a clink of light in what was a devastating period for the community.

This story is a reflective snapshot of the historical, emotional, economic and cultural significance of Motherwell’s community and society in the 1990s, through the prism of the football club’s Scottish Cup victory.
The film features Motherwell legends from the cup final victory; captain Tom Boyd, Chris McCart, Ian Angus, Iain Ferguson, Luc Nijholt, Stevie Kirk, Jim Griffin and Colin O’Neill, Ravenscraig steelworkers Donald Oliver and Kevin Harper, Dr Valerie Wright, de-industrialisation historian from Glasgow University, Motherwell FC historian Keith Brown, as well as Motherwell FC’s former CEO Alan Burrows. The story is enhanced visually by fabulous archive, memorabilia and drama reconstruction.


Writer / Producer / Director: Margot McCuaig

Filmed: Gavin Hopkins

Editor: Kenny Park

Narrator: Alex O’Henley