Friday 15 December 2017

Jobs boost for Leitrim as €1m Shed Distillery Visitor Centre gets the green light

Amy Molloy

Amy Molloy

A new state-of-the-art Visitor Centre at the Shed Distillery in Leitrim has received planning permission from the county council - with ten new jobs set to be created.

The 6,000 square-foot centre looks set to attract 10,000 visitors in its first year and will bring the total number of employees at the distillery up to 25.

It will also feature a brand new café, a botanical glasshouse and herb garden.

The Shed Distillery by PJ Rigney is based in Drumshanbo and is Connacht's first disillery in over 100 years.

An artist's impression of the new visitor centre
An artist's impression of the new visitor centre

It was launched in December 2014 and has now entered its third year of operation.

The new visitor experience will allow people to be brought through the process of slow-distilling premier grand cru whiskeys, small batch gin, vodka and new liquers.

Founder PJ Rigney says he is excited about creating employment in rural Ireland and expanding his business.

"The fundamental reasoning behind this investment is to meet the demands of the modern consumer," he said.

"Consumers now want to see behind the brand, see the medieval copper pot stills, touch and feel the botanicals - ultimately they want to know that the story and the brands are authentic.

"We also feel very strongly about creating further employment in rural Ireland.  The Drumshanbo and Leitrim community has been extremely supportive of The Shed Distillery since we first visited the location.  We continue to prioritise local employment and to date have taken a number of people off the live register and trained them up in the art of distillation, resulting in full-time jobs."

The Shed Distillery marks a return to traditional distillation using medieval copper pot stills and is the first multi-purpose distillery of its kind in Ireland.

Apart from Head Distiller Brian Taft, who is originally from the US, the team at The Shed Distillery is entirely local.

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