Commercial vehicle group Sherwood Truck & Van Ltd is getting behind One Direction’s bid to win the X Factor with a huge banner declaring support for the boy band.

Band member Louis Tomlinson, 18, is the son of Mark Tomlinson – a van salesman for Sherwood Truck & Van.

As the TV talent show heads towards the final, and with the band one of the favourites, Sherwood has thrown its support behind the lads.

Meanwhile, Mark has become a very popular member of staff….with colleagues hoping he can get autographs of Louis and his band mates, as well as the other contestants.

“I’ve become a bit of a local celebrity myself among my workmates,” he laughs. “There’s lots of talk about X Factor, and everybody wants me to tell them a story about what’s happening behind the scenes. There’s always some little bit of gossip that I can bring back.

“I am chief autograph hunter at the moment. I have got dozens and dozens.”

Mark, who has worked at Sherwood for the past six months, said even workmates who previously hadn’t been watching the show were now fans.

“They really enjoy watching it,” he says. “It’s really interesting when you know someone in it.”

Sherwood Truck & Van Ltd has placed the banner outside its Sheffield branch in Highfield Lane in support of One Direction, where it is already generating quite a bit of interest from passers by.

Helen Waterfall, Sherwood Truck & Van’s managing director, said: “We’re really excited for Louis and his family, and we wanted to show that we’re all rooting for One Direction to go all the way in the X Factor.”

Mark and Louis’ mum Johannah, of Bessacarr, Doncaster, have watched their son perform as part of the boy band every week – and Mark admits that as the weeks go by it is becoming more and more nerve-wracking.

“It’s one of those things you wouldn’t miss for the world,” says Mark. “We have been every week. It’s getting progressively more nerve-wracking. We think they have got a really good chance. We have been keeping an eye on what the bookies say and the lads have consistently been up there in the top three.”

Sherwood Truck & Van, which is based at Blackwell, near Alfreton, Derbyshire, and as well as the branch at Sheffield, also has branches at Etruria, Stoke-on-Trent, and at Lenton, Nottingham, is a leading supplier of new and used commercial vehicles, established in 1978. The company also maintains, services and repairs commercial vehicles across Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, South Yorkshire, Staffordshire and most of Cheshire.

It is now best known as a dealership for Iveco trucks and vans – the second largest manufacturer of commercial vehicles in Europe. The firm is also an Isuzu Truck dealer at Sheffield – providing vehicle sales, parts sales and vehicle repairs and servicing.

Sherwood prides itself on its service pedigree with a stock holding of more than 15,000 lines, a fully equipped accident repair centre and 24-hour roadside support.