£2m confectionery visitor attraction planned for York

image captionYork has been associated with the production of confectionery for more than two centuries

The company that created the Jorvik Viking Centre is behind a new scheme to develop a £2m chocolate-themed visitor attraction in York.

The Sweet History of York would tell the story of the confectionery industry in the city.

The visitor attraction company Continuum say it has begun discussions over a vacant property in Kings Square.

If planning permission is given it is hoped the attraction would open in the spring of 2012.

York's association with the production of confectionery dates back more than two centuries.

The city was home to two of the biggest British names in chocolate, Rowntree Mackintosh and Terry's.

Swiss confectionary firm, Nestle, who acquired Rowntrees in the 1980s, still have a major manufacturing facility in the city.

Continuum developed and ran the Jorvik Viking Centre for 18 years and they currently operate a number of attractions including Portsmouth's Spinnaker Tower and Oxford Castle - Unlocked.

The company is seeking planning consent to convert a shop on Kings Square into the chocolate-themed attraction with retail space and a cafe, spread over three floors, totalling 6,400 sq ft (594 sq m).

Juliana Delaney, chief executive of Continuum, said it was still early days and there was a long way to go.

She said: "Reports produced by the council call for additions to the tourism offer in the city and we hope to add value to the fantastic visitor experience the city already offers and give visitors a reason to come back."

Ms Delaney added that the development could create more than 30 new jobs.

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