Contractor J Tomlinson has appointed a new group finance director as part of the company’s expansion plans.

Mel Sowter is the first female director to join the Nottingham-based firm since it was founded in the 1950s.

A results driven, commercially astute and strategic finance director with demonstrable success in business growth, Mel joins J Tomlinson as the company expects to see its turnover increase from £54 million in 2014 to £67 million this year, with a forecast to rise again next year.

The firm, which operates across the East Midlands, West Midlands and Yorkshire, employs 383 people, and has been named in Deloitte’s Businesses Leading Britain 2014 report, which provides insights into the UK’s 1,000 fastest-growing businesses with annual revenues between £30 million and £1 billion.

J Tomlinson CEO Mark Davis said: “The team at J Tomlinson is very pleased to announce the appointment of Mel Sowter as our new group finance director, at a time when the company is going through a significant period of growth.

“She has experience of both the construction sector and the service business, bringing a valuable set of skills to the company.”

Mel is responsible for the financial and management accounts of J Tomlinson, as well as the human resources and information technology support services. Her position is a newly created post.

“I am delighted to have joined J Tomlinson, a well-known company with a good reputation in the market place,” she said. “The company’s expansion plans are very exciting and the company values are very people focused. I relish the opportunity to join the team, add value and make a difference.”

Mel has previously worked for organisations including Xylem Water Solutions, a global market leader in water and wastewater transport and treatment for municipal and industrial customers, where she was also the first female to join the board in the UK, housebuilder Westbury Homes, and Leicester Royal Infirmary NHS Trust.

J Tomlinson, which has its head office in Beeston near Nottingham, offers services in construction, refurbishment, repairs and maintenance, mechanical and electrical engineering, energy efficiency, renewables, and facilities management, and works across a range of sectors including social housing, emergency services, healthcare, education, retail and commercial property.