Father-of-three Paul Jameson has become the 700th person to start work with leading Cumbrian company Story Contracting.

Paul, 40, boosted the workforce to its highest-ever level after joining the company’s plant division as a fabricator/welder.

His appointment comes shortly after Story Contracting took on 28 apprentices, trainees and graduates – the biggest number in the firm's history.

Paul, who lives in Aspatria, said he was proud to have become the 700th employee.

“The reputation of Story played a big part in me wanting to join the company but also the training opportunities available. I really like the idea of being able to grow with the business," he said.

Paul was welcomed on his first day by the company’s longest serving member of staff, site manager Mike Milner.

Mike, who has worked at Story for 29 years, said: “There were only six people here when I started so the company has changed a lot over the years.

“It’s great to see we’re now at 700. I hope Paul settles in well.”

Story, which is a Best Place to Work finalist in the Carlisle Living Awards 2018, has gone from strength to strength since it was founded in 1987 by Fred Story from a portable building in his back garden.

The company, with its headquarters on Burgh Road Industrial Estate, Carlisle now has five divisions – plant, rail, construction, Story Scotland and Reiver Homes – and offices in Chorley, Leeds, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

HR director Helen Jameson said: “We have grown by almost 100 people in the last year – our site personnel has increased by 18 per cent and our office-based staff by 10 per cent.

“It is fantastic to see the continuing success of the business, with our reputation and skills meaning we are delivering more and more work."