An artist impression of the new centre.
A state-of-the-art new Visitor Centre at the first distillery in Connacht in 101 years has received planning permission from Leitrim Co. Council.
The 6,000 square-foot Visitor Experience at The Shed Distillery by PJ Rigney in Drumshanbo Co. Leitrim is set to create ten new jobs at full capacity and to attract 10,000 visitors in its first year of operation.
This will bring the total number of employees at the distillery to twenty-five. Since its December 2014 launch, The Shed Distillery has already created ten full-time jobs as well as five part-time positions.
The Visitor Centre comes as The Shed Distillery by PJ Rigney enters its third year of operation, and approaches the first anniversary of the launch of their first brand – Drumshanbo Gunpowder Irish Gin.
As well as a visitor journey through the process of slow- distilling premier grand cru whiskeys and small batch gin, vodka and new liqueurs, the new experience will also feature a café, a botanical glasshouse and herb garden.
PJ Rigney, the founder of The Shed Distillery, says the decision to build the new Visitor Experience, was led by an international consumer trend to ‘discover the authenticity behind the brand’.
“Whilst eventually the Visitor Centre may sustain itself, the fundamental reasoning behind this investment is to meet the demands of the modern consumer.”
“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.”
“We are delighted to have received planning permission for our new Visitor Centre and will work closely with Leitrim Co. Council to meet all conditions and progress the build as soon as possible.”
The directors of the Shed Distillery are Patrick J Rigney, John Dillon and Denise Rigney.
Local architect Thomas G. Flynn is directing the building project and will prioritise working with local suppliers and contractors.