A HARTLEPOOL construction company has brought jobs joy to town by creating 40 new posts.
Brickwork Services Ltd, based on the Queens Meadow Business Park, has added the recruits to its existing 170-strong workforce.
Bosses say the extra hands are needed to cope with a workload worth millions of pounds.
The firm specialises in providing bricklaying and building services to the construction sector. Company founder Steve Willis said he needed more workers because the construction sector was showing “definite signs of improvement”.
He said: “We are actively recruiting to find the additional teams of skilled bricklayers that we need to meet demand.”
The firm is also investing more than £100,000 in development while UK Steel Enterprise, which runs the Queens Meadow innovation centre where Brickwork is based, has contributed a £50,000 unsecured loan towards the package.
Brickwork boasts clients including Yuill Homes, Taylor Wimpey, Miller Homes, Keepmoat and the Esh Group.
Brickwork Services was started in 2004 by Mr Willis, using the expertise and contacts he built up after 30 years working in the industry.
The firm also has a separate division called Pro-Active Safety Solutions which provides consultancy and training in health, safety and environmental issues.
Mr Willis added: “I am very grateful to UK Steel Enterprise for committing to an investment that is really important for the next stage of our development.
“It was proving impossible to get the finance we needed from other sources. No-one was interested because we are involved in the construction sector, despite our healthy order book.”
He said the firm had built up a large list of contracts by insisting on “the highest standards of workmanship and reliability and the fact that all our contracts are very closely supervised”.
While the workforce is employed all over the region, its management team of 14 is based in Hartlepool.
Mr Willis said: “The company is in a very good place to take immediate advantage of the upturn.”
Simon Hamilton, regional manager for UK Steel Enterprise, said: “Our bottom line is about helping to regenerate and create jobs in traditional steel areas so we have more flexibility than other lenders.
“Brickwork Services has a strong order book, highly professional management team and a reputation that has enabled them to grow well despite the recent difficulties in the sector.”