A LONG-SERVING city centre shop is to close early in the new year.

The Thorntons branch, for many years a staple store for Carlisle shoppers to get themselves all manner of luxury chocolate goods, will no longer be trading from January.

The company has stated it is trying to find alternative

employment for those working at the outlet, on St Albans Row.

A spokeswoman for Thorntons said: “Like any retailer, we are continuously reviewing our store estate to ensure we are in the locations that meet our customer needs.

“As a result of such a review, the decision was taken to close our store in Carlisle on January 4.

“Currently, seven staff members are employed at the store and we are looking to find them other employment opportunities where possible.”

The nearest Thorntons store to Carlisle is at the Gretna Gateway Outlet Village, sited at the edge of Gretna.

The spokeswoman for the company added: “Thorntons has been delighted to serve our many local customers over the years.

“We would encourage them to shop for their favourite Thorntons products at our store in Gretna Green or online at www.thorntons.co.uk in the future.”