Construction of new Kilchoman warehouse in Conisby begins

The Kilchoman distillery had been looking for a location for a new bonded warehouse since 2009. Warehouse No. 1, built in 2005 on the distillery site, had quickly become too small. As it was not possible to build further warehouses on Rockside Farm, the search was on for a suitable site throughout Islay. This was believed to have been found in Conisby on the other side of the Rhinns on Loch Indaal, but the planning application submitted in February 2010 was surprisingly rejected by Argyll & Bute Council on 3 October 2011 after more than a year and a half. In the meantime, the lack of storage space had become a problem that jeopardised further whisky production and Kilchoman concluded temporary contracts with several other Islay distilleries (Bruichladdich, Bowmore and even Port Ellen) to temporarily store casks in their warehouses.

As Kilchoman emphasised to Argyll & Bute Council, they would not be able to extend these agreements beyond 2012, which in the worst case could mean storing the casks on the Scottish mainland or halting whisky production.

So they were very pleased that, after a long back and forth with the planning authorities, an appeal against the rejection of the planning application was successful decided on 3 April 2012.

Construction work on the new warehouse complex in Conisby began on 22 August 2012. In the future, up to 10,000 casks will be stored in two connected warehouses covering an area of 2,400 m2.