Workers see treble as triplets join
Teenage triplets have proved they really are three of a kind - by all opting to join digger giant JCB as apprentice welders.
Jack, Katie and Liam Rowe are now training at the same JCB Heavy Products factory in Uttoxeter, Staffordshire, and even arrive for work riding a convoy of 50cc scooters.
The 16-year-old siblings, who live in Dane Grove, Cheadle, Staffs, have been taken on by JCB as the firm pumps £3.5 million into recruiting more than 100 young people during 2012.
The triplets are receiving training in fabrication and all welding disciplines and will complete their apprenticeships in June next year.
Katie, who is JCB's only female welding apprentice, said: "Everyone was surprised to hear that we were triplets and at first they didn't believe us."
Her brother Jack, who hopes to become a team leader at the plant, said: "We've had a great reaction since we came to work here and everyone has been really helpful, giving us tips and advice on different techniques."
The triplets' unanimous choice of career is said to have raised smiles among their colleagues and Liam has already raised the prospect of one day being his sister and brother's boss.
The three were born by emergency Caesarean section almost three months prematurely on August 23 1995, each weighing not much more than a bag of sugar. They then spent three months in intensive care before their parents, Carol and Dave Rowe, were allowed to take them home to join their 23-month-old brother Nathan.
Mr Rowe, 47, who was working as a nightshift team leader at JCB Heavy Products when the triplets were born, said: "We are so proud of them and they are very lucky to have apprenticeships at a company like JCB. The three of them have always been very close to one another and wherever one of them is, the others aren't far behind.
"JCB and my colleagues at the time were very, very good to me when the triplets were born and it's amazing now to think that, 16 years later, all are training to be welders at the company and at the same factory."