Community-owned distillery seeks £2.5m in crowdfunding

2nd January, 2019 by Owen Bellwood

A community group is hoping to raise £2.5 million (US$3.2m) through crowdfunding to construct a sustainable whisky distillery on the Scottish island of Barra.

The Barra Distillery is hoping to raise £2.5 million (US$3.2m) through crowdfunding

The Barra Distillery, which was founded as a community benefit society, is hoping to construct and operate a community-owned Scotch whisky distillery and visitor centre on the Outer Hebridean island.

The distillery is seeking prospective investors who can offer a minimum of £250 (US$317) in return for one of a number of rewards, including branded polo shirts, bottles of the distillery’s whisky, tours of the site and cask filling opportunities.

The money raised through the crowdfunding campaign will be used to create a “state-of-the-art” distillery at Upper Borve, a village on the west coast of Barra.

Planning permission for a distillery at the site has already been granted.

The Barra Distillery will have the capacity to produce 26,220 litres of whisky per year, with all ingredients for production sourced from the Island.

The proposed building has been designed to re-use heat from the stills to heat the visitor centre, and the distillery aims to become 100% renewable in the future.

The society has already completed the first phase of its renewable energy initiative, with the construction of four wind turbines on the island and plans are in place for a second hydro phase in the future.

If the funding drive is successful, the Barra Distillery will become the second newly built distillery in the Outer Hebrides since the Stornoway distillery, which was constructed in the 1820s.

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