The Isle of Harris Distillery began with a simple idea.
The inspiration came from Anderson 'Burr' Bakewell, who has been bound to this island through a long connection with nearby Scarp, and many decades of life spent among the landscapes of Harris and people of our community.
He believed that the rare and elusive spirit of this island could be captured in a bottle and shared with the world.
Over the decades Burr, like many others, noted with sadness the long-term decline in the island's population, our community's numbers having halved over the last fifty years.
As young people left the shores to seek their fortune, few were able to return to find work, set down roots and build a life in the place they called home. He believed that a distillery, built for not just years but for generations, could be a way to help stem this tide.
So, he gathered a group of like-minded individuals around him and set out on a seven year journey to bring his ambitions to reality.
September 24th 2015 saw his simple idea finally come to fruition as the doors to the Isle of Harris Distillery opened for the first time.
The distillery started life with just 10 people and an ambition to double this number over the next five years. Today, they are proud to say to employ almost 40 permanent staff, a highly significant number in an island of fewer than 2000 inhabitants.
In these early days of Isle of Harris Distillery's history, it is clear that Burr's vision is already making a real difference here in the Isle of Harris.
As a catalyst for positive change within the community, Isle of Harris Distillery continues to work with purpose, bringing new life to their island and supporting its aspirations to survive and thrive as they move forward together to meet the challenges of the 21st century.