A thriving Blackburn bakery business proposed to move into a 171-year-old mill building so it can expand and create new jobs.

The Moorings Bakery Ltd is currently based in Moorings Close, Lower Darwen.

It is now seeking to take over Unit 6 of Waterfall Mill in Queen Victoria Street, Mill Hill.

The firm has submitted a planning application to convert the unit, currently a plumbing showroom, for food preparation and a shop.

A supporting statement provided for Blackburn with Darwen Council planners says: "I am writing in respect of internal alterations to the ground floor area to create a food preparation area and small food retail area selling baked and confectionary items produced on-site.

"The proposed works will improve the visual appearance of the existing building.

"The applicant has already got a well-established company and is moving to this new site to allow for expansion.

"This will ensure the prolonged use of the building ensuring it will not fall into disrepair.

"The business already employs 20 staff and as part of the new works they will look to expand the workforce giving new job opportunities to the local residents which is what Waterfall Mill has done for 172 years.

"To the first floor, the existing showroom will be converted to a food preparation area and the existing offices will be retained with a new canteen area for staff.

"The existing roof covering is to be replaced with a new pressed metal roof and new solar panels installed to power the baking equipment.

"The site is currently used for light industrial, storage and distribution with a large retail space to the ground and first floor.

"To the first floor are staff offices used for works related to the showroom/plumbing business.

"To the rear/north side of the building, the existing access will be altered to allow a ramp to be installed.

"This will incorporate a walk-in fridge and walk-in freezer as well as an air break between the factory floor and the outside air

"On the first floor, the existing showroom will be removed and this area converted to the small treats production and the existing offices will remain with some converted to give a canteen area for the staff.

"As part of the works, a second floor area will be created to accommodate a new boardroom/display area.

"This will provide a meeting area/training area for staff as well as an area to bring clients.

"This area will incorporate a balcony area to give an outside space for breaks when training is being carried out."