Bence Builders Merchants attended a private garden party at 10 Downing Street, hosted by David Cameron and George Osborne, in recognition of their Small Business Campaign backing.

The construction company from Cheltenham had supported the Conservative-led campaign and received a visit from the Chancellor a week before the May election.

Paul Bence said: “My commercial director and I were honoured to be invited to 10 Downing Street for a private function. I took little time in promoting the construction industry to Mr Cameron, and in our discussion he personally believed that the second half of 2015 will see a real spike in building works nationally.

“We briefly went on to discuss our company heritage and growth in our family business. At this juncture he said he had to leave as he had Obama on the phone, but we were then lucky enough to meet Larry, the PM’s cat on the way out!”

Carlwyn Coombes, commercial director at Bence Builders Merchants, said: “Representing the merchant industry in the PM's back garden was a great and humbling experience. Not many people get the opportunity to converse with the Prime Minister and Chancellor and it was a privilege to discuss current affairs and our business with them.”