BOSSES at a north Hampshire firm were delighted to have the chance to update their local MP on the progress that the business has made over the last 12 months.

James Arbuthnot, North East Hampshire MP and chairman of the Parliamentary Defence Select Committee, was making his second visit to Surface Technology International (STI) – an electronics manufacturing firm – in Hook.

STI group director Tony Best said: “We are extremely fortunate to have a local MP who is actively interested in our progress.

“We were honoured to host a second tour for Mr Arbuthnot, and we laid out our plans for investment and expansion for our UK facility. This has been a great opportunity to tell our story 12 months on and the changes have been dramatic.

“We’ve not only added a further 20,000 sq ft to our factory footprint to house an extended testing area, but we’ve invested £50,000 in a radio frequency screened room.

“This demonstrates our commitment to new technology and also to supporting our key customers in the Aerospace and Defence sectors in specialist areas.

“We also highlighted the recent news of winning a contract with Allen-Vanguard to manufacture Counter IED – Improvised Explosive Devices – products for deployment internationally to military and government customers.”

Announcing the Allen-Vanguard contract, Mr Best said this is key to retaining skilled employees and keeping quality engineering and manufacturing in the UK.

Mr Arbuthnot said: “It is terrific to see how well STI continues to perform.

“I am pleased that this progressive and innovative company is in my constituency, and am proud of its considerable achievements.”