A confectionary firm with a factory in Huntingdon has applied to the district council for an extension which could see 45 new jobs created.

Hotel Chocolat, which has a factory in Redwongs Way, has applied to Huntingdonshire District Council for an 8m high, single-story industrial block, which would be an extension to its existing premises.

The retailer's proposal also states that, if approved, the factory would increase the number of parking spaces available by 86, to allow for long-term staff increase.

A statement submitted by planning agent Barker Berry on behalf of Hotel Chocolat said that the proposal would also see removal of the existing basement pump chamber.

It said: "This application seeks planning permission for the extension to the existing factory, the removal of an existing basement pump chamber at the front of the site and the re-use of this area for additional car parking and the creation of an additional access on to Redwongs Way.

"In addition, it is proposed that a new sprinkler tank and pump house be located to the rear of the site.

"The site is located within an established industrial area whereby employment uses are favoured. The proposal will expand an existing business of benefit to the wider economy, according with national and local planning policy."

Hotel Chocolat has said that the new extension would be used for production of foodstuffs which will be made, packaged and stored in the factory.

The statement also says that the new extension would not impact negatively on the surrounding area and the appearance would be 'clean and simple'.

The store currently has two main production sites in Huntingdon and St Neots, and has been in situated in Huntingdon for 14 years.

The land is currently owned by Huntingdon Town Council and is now in the process of being sold to the firm, after councillors gave the extension their approval at a town council meeting earlier this month.

Hotel Chocolat opened its first shop in London in 2004 and now boasts 103 shops as well as cafes and restaurants. It can trace it roots back to 1993, however, when it first began selling chocolate online.