Chocolate shop in melting pot

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MORE jobs are at risk as Thorntons announces the closure of up to 180 stores.

The chocolate maker, which has a store and cafe in Westborough, said a minimum of 120 stores would shut over the next three years, with the possibility of an extra 60 closures.

The news comes just a day after it was announced fashion retailer Jane Norman, which has a branch in Debenhams at the Brunswick Shopping Centre, has gone in to administration, putting five Scarborough jobs at risk.

It is not yet known if the Scarborough Thorntons will close or how many jobs are affected.

Thorntons said the outlets that will be closed are among the 364 stores directly owned and run by the company.

It said it hoped to replace them with franchised stores “in the majority of locations”.

Thorntons currently has 227 shops run by franchisees, though the Scarborough store is not one of them.

The company added it would continue to expand its commercial division aims to grow website sales.