UP to 75 local jobs could be created after it was confirmed a logistics company is eyeing up a move to a planned new warehouse in Widnes.

Halton Council's planning chiefs this week backed an application to construct a 5,615 sq m building to the west of the Shell Green industrial estate on Bennetts Lane.

The proposals include a building designated for logistics/industrial use, office space, 58 parking spaces, 23 HGV trailer spaces and a service yard.

The scheme had been put forward by London-based Avjon 3 Ltd but no end user had been identified in the original plans. But at Monday's planning meeting at Runcorn Town Hall, project chiefs said it would be a 'national logistics' company - but remained tight-lipped on their exact identity.

Speaking on behalf of the applicant, Richard Gee of planning consultancy Roman Summer Associates Ltd, told members of the council's development management committee: "Although I can't reveal the name of the end user due to confidentiality reasons, it is a national logistics business.

"They have four hubs across the North West - none currently in Halton - and this will be their fifth."

He added: "It is expected to create between 50 and 75 jobs."

Although the council's development management committee backed the plans some issues remain to be resolved before a spade goes in the ground.

A report to the committee said the applicant had been  working with Merseyside Environmental Advisory Service (MEAS)  to overcome 'concerns' regarding habitats for local bats and birds. It added that work was underway to find a suitable site to compensate for the loss of habitat.

The meeting was told by officers that the best time to make the necessary wildlife and habitat assessments was exactly this time of year, and that that work was being undertaken in the 'next couple of weeks'.

The committee then gave delegated authority to Halton's operational director for planning to determine the application, in consultation with the chair or vice chair of the council's planning committee, following the 'satisfactory resolution of the outstanding issues' relating to MEAS.