Sales of Thorntons-branded chocolates have continued to grow despite another sales slump at its high-street stores.

Sales of its chocolates rose 9% to £49.9m in the 14 weeks to 2 October, with total sales up 7.4% to £50.3m, it said. But own-store sales fell 4.1% on a like-for-like basis to £26m.

"Performances of commercial and Thorntons Direct were particularly pleasing," said executive chairman John von Spreckelsen, adding that new initiatives included a "strong" Christmas range.