James Halstead, the commercial flooring company, is on course produce a record trading performance this year.

Its chairman, Geoffrey Halstead, will tell shareholders at today's AGM: "It is gratifying to report that this, our centenary year, has every expectation of being a new record in terms of turnover and profit.

"In my report on the results for the year ended 30 June 2014 I noted growth in turnover both in the UK and in our overseas markets. At this point we are around 5% ahead of the comparative year in terms of turnover.

"I believe our first half results will be in line with management expectations.

"Our cash balances continue to be solid underpinning the 7p dividend paid today which is an increase of 16.7% on that of last year. In this hundredth year I have every expectation that dividend will again increase - which will be the 40th year of growth.

"A special year, indeed."