New company plans first craft gin distillery on Orkney Islands

New company Orkney Distilling has unveiled plans to construct the first ever craft gin distillery on the Orkney Islands.

Husband and wife team, Stephen and Aly Kemp from Kirkwall, are seeking planning permission to create the artisan distillery, visitor centre and shop on the town’s Ayre Road.

If approved, the distillery will produce the Kemps’ own variety of gin – Kirkjuvagr – which has been in development over the past few months.

They have used researchers at the Agronomy Institute at the University of the Highlands and Islands in Kirkwall to help identify 'a uniquely Orcadian blend of ingredients'.

Production of Kirkjuvagr will initially be carried out on mainland Scotland using the same artisan process Orkney Distilling will employ when production moves to Orkney, upon completion of the Kirkwall distillery.

Following approval, work on the distillery will start in the autumn of this year, with an official opening likely in April 2017.