Fife distillery wins red tape battle and plans first single malt

Inchdairnie Distillery in GlenrothesInchdairnie Distillery in Glenrothes
Inchdairnie Distillery in Glenrothes
Government Reporter backs their case

A Glenrothes distillery has cut through the red tape that was hampering its expansions plans.

InchDairnie Distillery in Whitecraigs Road, which opened in 2015, is working towards unveiling its first single malt in 2029 .

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However, Fife Council failing to make a ruling on hazardous substance consent for the storage and processing of alcohol threatened the future of the business.

In March 2019 the firm applied to the council for permission to build a whisky blending facility at the distillery and at the same time made an application for a hazardous substance consent.

The planning permission was granted in June of that year, but when by October hazardous substance content was not granted a second application was made.

This kind of application is supposed to be dealt with within two months, but by March of this year the second application had still not been progressed leading to a ‘non-determination’ notice being made.

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The council blamed a ‘key statutory consultee’ was not responding in time, with the Health and Safety Executive confirming a lack of resources meant it failed to respond within the regulatory timetable.

Despite no objections being received from the public, within the council or any of the statutory consultees who did respond, there was no sign the matter would be resolved any time soon.

With the business unable to operate without hazardous substance content, and plans to take on more staff having to be shelved, it turned to the Scottish Government for help.

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This has finally seen the distillery given the consent it was looking for after Government Reporter, Chris Norman,ruled favourably.

He said: “There have been no objections to the proposal from any statutory consultees or members of the public and Fife Council is supportive and agrees with the appellant’s stance that the hazardous substances consent is granted in advance of the revocation of the existing consents.

“Upon reaching my decision I have attached considerable weight to the appellant’s confirmation of June 26 that the new consent should be put in place prior to the revocation of the existing consents, that the appellant would not “exploit” that situation and that no claim for compensation would be forthcoming.”

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