Building work at Chequers Court to create a new foodstore - believed to be Waitrose - and new shops could start in the autumn.

Speaking at the opening of Huntingdon's multi-storey car park, near Sainsbury's, Stephen Clark, director of Churchmanor Estates, which owns the site, described the type of retailer he hoped would fill the units. "We hope it attracts the missing ingredient - more fashion orientated tenants," he said.

When the new Sainsbury's to the west of the town opens, the current branch will be redeveloped and the petrol station is due to be replaced with a large retail store.

Huntingdonshire District Council's executive leader Councillor Jason Ablewhite said it would be an "anchor store", due to be occupied by what he described as "the likes of Matalan".

"It'll be the type of store you would normally see on the edge of town," he added.