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Thorntons new concept store is located in Derby’s Intu Shopping Centre

Thorntons is opening a concept store in Derby with an resident chocolate maker and new-look café.

The trial store opens its doors in the Intu Shopping Centre today as part of plans to “reinvigorate the much-loved Thorntons masterbrand”.

Under the new format, an in-store chocolate maker will be on hand to talk about the history and craft of Thorntons chocolates and offer a free demonstration of how the chocolates are made. Customers will also be able to request personalised touches to gifts.

The new-look café will have table service and a “new and exciting menu” including hand-crafted ice cream sundaes, hot chocolates and limited edition milkshakes “inspired by our Thorntons Continental range”.

Tapping into the trend for dessert cafés, customers will also be able to order dishes including a salted caramel praline torte, alpini cake and triple mousse brownies.

The move is part of Ferrero’s multimillion investment in the Thorntons brand that began last year. If the format proves successful, it could be rolled out more widely across the estate.

“The Intu Derby store concept has been designed and created as a trial store initially, as we test different approaches to connect with our shoppers,” said Thorntons head of PR Ben Fell. “Ultimately, the new store gives us the chance to show our shoppers the love and passion we have for chocolate making and the dedication to delivering high-quality products that Thorntons prides itself on.”

Alongside the launch, all Thorntons stores will offer free samples of the new recipe Continental chocolates with window displays and point-of-sale promotional materials.