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Whiskey making set to return to Derry after nearly a century

By Donna Deeney

Published 14/10/2016

Ciaran Mulgrew founder of the Quite Man Irish Whiskey which will be distilled on a new site in Ebrington Square in Derry. Picture Martin McKeown.
Ciaran Mulgrew founder of the Quite Man Irish Whiskey which will be distilled on a new site in Ebrington Square in Derry. Picture Martin McKeown.

A new distillery planned for the heart of Ebrington Square will mark a return to one of Londonderry’s oldest traditions.

In addition to the creation of 43 new jobs, the Quiet Man craft distillery will include a visitor centre where the rich history of whiskey production in Derry will be told.

Whiskey was last distilled in Derry in 1921, which saw the closure of three different sites on both sides of the Foyle where the drink had been produced. Quiet Man managing director Ciaran Mulgrew shared his expectations of his new business with members of the Business and Culture Committee of Derry and Strabane Council.

He said: “We will be building on a long tradition of Irish whiskey-making in the city which dates back to 1815, when Alexander Stewart built the city’s first licensed distillery.

“In addition to the distillery, the building will also include a visitor centre detailing the history of whiskey in the city and a whiskey garden to the rear of the building, where visitors can watch the River Foyle wind its way through Derry while enjoying a sample of the Quiet Man.”

Mr Mulgrew could not give figures for the number of construction jobs the project would create from now until its completion in 2018, but said a total of 43 jobs would be created once the business was up and running.

Mr Mulgrew is awaiting planning approval for the £12m project to transform two key buildings at the former army barracks.

David Ramsey, a DUP councillor for the area and member of the committee, said the distillery plans would help draw more tourists into the Waterside.

He said: “Tourism figures for the city are up, but there is still not enough development in the Waterside to draw visitors over.

“This distillery will not only help the development of Ebrington Square, but will give tourists a very good reason to come to the East Bank.”

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