Maryport's SIS Pitches has unveiled a £1.8 million expansion, which will create 15 jobs by 2022.

The turf production facility, on the Glasson Industrial Estate, means the firm can increase its production and safeguard its existing staff of more than 50.

The new 21,000sq m factory is one of the most technologically advanced, the firm said.

It has also bought a new backing plant.

Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership gave £274,000 towards the expansion.

SIS Pitches provides specialist sports pitches and landscaping grass.

Last year, SIS Pitches designed, constructed and installed SISGrass hybrid pitches at six 2018 World Cup venues, including the Luzhniki Stadium pitch for the opening match and the final.

George Mullan, SIS Pitches owner and chief executive, said: “This investment in new state-of-the-art facilities and technology will support our ambitious growth plans while also creating and safeguarding jobs in the local community.

“The Glasson Industrial Estate has been at the heart of manufacturing for more than 50 years and, despite business uncertainty in the face of Brexit, we are very proud to be able to continue that tradition through this significant investment. We are also grateful to Cumbria LEP for their investment in the project.

“Our new factory will ensure we continue to provide the highest quality products and increased output, maintaining our position as the market leader in the manufacturing of synthetic turf.”

The new facility uses the latest technology in thermal insulation, LED lighting, laser-fire detection and advanced cladding systems, while the new backing plant will be the most advanced turf backing system in the UK.