A DESIGN business has continued its growth after buying a factory.

WDM, which provides design, printing and mailing services to local government and universities, has acquired a site on Team Valley Trading Estate, in Gateshead.

The company, formerly known as Washington Direct Mail, was supported with a £575,000 loan from Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.

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Bosses say the move will allow it to continue producing about one million items every month.

Director Lynn Beasley bought the family-run firm from her employer 20 years ago, and purchased the premises after renting them for the last ten years.

Lynn said: “We realised that by owning our own building, we could make huge cost savings in the long-term by installing energy efficient lighting and modern heating.

“We cover the whole of the UK, but the vast majority of our work comes from the North-East.

“As a lot of our customers have stayed with us for many years, it made sense to firmly stake our presence here.

“My parents worked here and so do my husband and sons, so we have every intention of staying in Gateshead for many years to come.”

Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking provided the funding under the Government-backed Funding for Lending Scheme, in which customers receive a discount of one per cent of the life of the loan.

Jeff Owens, Lloyds' relationship manager, added: “WDM is a superb example of a company that has grown and expanded, and it's great to see them embarking on this new phase.”