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Almighty new home for Valhalla Ales

03 April 2012

The most northerly brewery in the UK will open its doors to the public on Sunday 15 April for the grand launch of its new brewery premises.

Valhalla Brewery, based on the Shetland island of Unst, has completed a move to new larger building after outgrowing its previous site. The £103,000 project also sees the opening of a new brewery shop and recruitment of additional staff.

Supported by funding from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) and Shetland Islands Council, the site boasts a gift shop, extra capacity for bus tours and over double its previous production capacity.

Valhalla Brewery produces six real ales which are brewed, bottled, labelled and packaged on site by its small workforce.

The brewery has won numerous awards including the 2002 Champion Ale Award at the Malvern festival.

Opened in December 1997 by husband and wife team, Sonny and Sylvia Priest, the brewery is named after the hall in the celestial regions, home of the Norse god Odin, where slain Viking warriors were borne to be revived by a horn full of ale.

Sonny Priest of Valhalla Brewery explained: "During the summer months, demand usually exceeds supply and the old site was too small for any expansion. We have already starting exploring new markets and it's also very exciting to be opening our new shop. We hope visitors will come to Unst, visit the brewery and see exactly where our award winning ales are made."

David Priest, Development Manager at HIE, said: "The extra production capacity now possible means that what has been a successful local brand of beer can now become a successful export and will hopefully be seen on the shelves in supermarkets across Scotland as well as Europe."

Maurice Henderson from Shetland Islands Council Economic Development Unit, said: "The move to new premises at Haroldswick provides Valhalla Brewery with modern, spacious accommodation with room to expand. The new shop will provide an additional sales outlet for the business and also encourage more visitors to Unst".


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