Published: 11:55, 12 July 2019
| Updated: 12:31, 12 July 2019
A new town centre distillery and bar is opening after being granted planning permission.
The premises, forming part of the Market Buildings, is an historic structure dating back to 1835 and once housed the county town's corn exchange.
They have been granted permission to change Unit 5, formerly a hairdressers, into a working distillery and bar.
While the new venue will require the owners to carry out some alterations - modifying one of the arch-shaped windows for access - they are keeping period features including floor-to-ceiling windows, arches, and Tuscan columns with their keystones on the outside.
The couple have been working with experienced local company RAP Interiors, who have provided an artist’s impression of how the Distillery could look.
The planning permission marked an important milestone in realising the ambition to bring a distillery and visitor attraction to the town centre.
Darren Graves, co-founder and father-of-three, said: “The local authority has been very helpful in advising us on our planned distillery, culminating in today's wonderful news that we are granted permission.
"The distillery has gained a lot of local support and interest and we are delighted to be taking our plans forward.
"The Maidstone Distillery is helping re-establish a legacy of Distilling in Kent and will celebrate the history of distilling at its new premises as well as its modern interpretation of craft spirit making."
The new venue, set to open later this year, will produce artisan gin, vodka, liqueurs and eventually cask matured spirits such as whisky.
As well as the bar there will be experiences such as distillery tours and making gin on mini copper stills, as well as other yet-to-be-announced unique events.
The Distillery will also include a small shop.
The refurbishment will take approximately 10 to 12 weeks and will adopt a phased approach; establishing a distillery and experience room with the addition of a high-end bar at a later stage.
You can visit the distillery's own website here.