A LONG-awaited trade shop - from an East Lancashire kitchens to bathrooms manufacturer - is set to thrown open its doors next spring

JJO, which also makes bedroom furniture, has invested £750,000 in Marshall House, off Bacup Road in Rawtenstall.

The hub, at the former Jacobsen's warehouse, is named after the late Kenneth Marshall, a JJO director, who lost a battle with cancer last year.

Rossendale and Darwen MP and erstwhile Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry has given an official welcome to the venture.

He said: "Creating a growing Northern economy is about seeing businesses like JJO PLC investing in Rawtenstall and not just in people but also into the infrastructure and buildings.

"It is amazing that we have here in the Rossendale Valley one of the finest furniture businesses, that is testament to the long term commitment of the Greenhalgh family and all of the employees.

"This is just the latest move in the steady expansion for this national locally based business."

Six months of negotiations preceded the securing of the site, with the deal being announced back in May 2018.

Work was also required to check whether the land was contaminated, before a complete refit could be delivered.

Before now the trade department has been located at their main site in Stacksteads.

But bosses, aware of parking difficulties there and traffic problems between Rawtenstall and Bacup, opted for the new location.

Joint managing director Stephen Greenhalgh said: "The building will be a trade shop and will also be used to display our product range.

"Everything for the trade customer will be in one central location and it will be much easier to access than trekking across the Valley. It will also provide the company with a visual street presence."

Extra offices have also been incorporated into the overall scheme.

Work on the external project is expected to be completed by Christmas, when the interior will be overhauled, ahead of an anticipated May opening.