North Uist Distillery owners are in high spirits

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Joint owners Jonny Ingledew and Kate Macdonald have used Business Gateway’s one-to-one business support and funded workshops throughout the planning stages of their new business venture, North Uist Distillery.

With a Masters’ degree in distilling, Jonny was well equipped with the theoretical experience and an concept, but it was Business Gateway that provided the practical experience necessary to form a business plan that would bring North Uist Distillery to market.

Motivated by a love for the Outer Hebrides and a mutual desire to bring a USP to the gin market, Jonny and Kate opened a small distillery in North Uist to produce their new spirit: Downpour.

Not only does it include double the number of botanicals as standard gin, but no other gin is distilled on the islands of Uist. Clear in the bottle, cloudy in the glass, essential oils from juniper berries and citrus peels give the gin a distinctive cloudy appearance when diluted with tonic.

The next phase of this ambitious business will involve fundraising for a new whisky distillery in North Uist.

Jonny and Kate received grant finance from Business Gateway’s Grants for Growth scheme. The £12,000 funding grant acted as a mechanism to pay early up-front costs and allowed the business owners to fund a comprehensive set of essential financials to present to future investors.

To find out more about how Business Gateway can help you set up and develop your own business call 01851 808 330 or visit