AFTER successfully gaining approval at a Darlington Borough Council planning meeting last week, Shalona Beaumont is preparing to take her business to the next level.

15 Station Terrace in Middleton St George is a dilapidated empty shop that will soon be the home of Shalona’s cake business with a shop, café and kitchen preparation space.

The local entrepreneur has run her business, Kaneen Cakes, on and off for the past 12 years from her home in Middleton St George while juggling a career in nursing but she has now decided to focus on her business.

Shalona said: “When they said my application had been granted I just burst into tears.

"I've wanted that shop for ages.

"I was so happy. I really just couldn’t believe it.”

At the meeting, councillors voted unanimously in favour of the proposals.

Darlington and Stockton Times: How 15 Station Terrace in Middleton St George, currently looks. Picture: SARAH CALDECOTTHow 15 Station Terrace in Middleton St George, currently looks. Picture: SARAH CALDECOTT

“I couldn’t believe it when everyone (all councillors) were in favour and put their hands up," Shalona said.

The baker started making cakes for the christenings of friends’ children and word soon got out that her talents were quite something.

Shalona attended Darlington College and became a qualified pastry chef and hasn’t looked back.

The sweet treat extraordinaire is naming the shop 'MJ’s' after her 14-year-old daughter, Millie June.

“We hope to be up and running in the shop by March or April next year and there’s a lot of work to do between now and then. There isn’t even electricity in there right now,” Shalona said.The 34-year-old has lived in the village all her life and has had an overwhelmingly positive response on social media

Comments on Facebook included:

(Councillor) Jonathan Clarke: “Like I said in the meeting, it’s great to see a young local entrepreneur with such passion for her local community. I’ll certainly be popping in for a cupcake ...or 3.”

Sara Lou: "Good Luck to Shalona. Sure it will be wonderful."

Liz Cutter: "It'll be great to bring some life back to that street."