A SANDWICH chain has defended its latest advertising campaign, launched weeks after a staff member was caught in a “compromising position” in a Carlisle store.

The nationwide company – which has several branches across Cumbria – came under fire after a picture emerged on social media showing a worker with his hands inside his trousers while behind the counter.

The store was identified as the one on Botchergate in the city centre.

The picture was posted on December 16, with the sandwich giants made aware of it a day later after someone contacted the Subway Twitter account.

It appears to show the worker looking at his mobile phone with his left hand while his right hand is inside his trousers.

After they were contacted on Twitter, a spokesman for Subway said: “Thank you for bringing this to our attention.

“We have notified appropriate parties regarding this incident and are currently looking into the matter.”

Several weeks after the investigation launched, the company has revealed its findings.

In relation to the photo of the member of staff, a spokesman from Subway told the News & Star: “We have high expectations of all franchise owners and their staff and require all stores to operate with strict hygiene standards.

“We have investigated this with the franchise owner pictured, who confirms that he was simply adjusting his clothing.

“He recognises that the way the image has been captured may cause concern and apologises.”

Last week, the chain began delivering leaflets containing vouchers for a new range of sandwiches.

The glossy leaflet – which states the words “Balls For All” – advertises the company’s new meatless meatball marinara to coincide with January alternatively being coined as ‘Veganuary’.

The move to distribute the leaflets to scores of homes and businesses across the area has been seen as a PR disaster following the last month’s incident with the shop worker.

When questioned about the advertising move, the Subway spokesman added: “The leaflet is meant to be a humourous reference to our new meatless meatball marinara sub, which is equally as delicious as our iconic meatball marinara sub.”

A spokesman from the chain declined to provide any further comment about both of the matters.