Gin distiller transforms former poultry shed into cocktail bar

For decades it has been used to sell animals such as chickens and rabbits but a shed at Melton Livestock Market has now been transformed into a cocktail bar and the new home of Brentingby Gin.

By Nick Rennie
Tuesday, 7th December 2021, 12:49 pm
Brentingby Gin owner Bruce Midgley at his new Fur and Feather cocktail bar in Melton EMN-210712-121619001
Brentingby Gin owner Bruce Midgley at his new Fur and Feather cocktail bar in Melton EMN-210712-121619001

Bruce Midgley has gradually grown his business since starting up his distillery from his village home in September 2018 and now boasts international customers, supermarkets and high end clients in London and around the UK.

He decided it was time to expand, which led to the move to the market’s former fur and feather shed with an investment of around £170,000.

As well as the new bar and distillery area, there is a room for customers to book out for functions, tasting events and sessions to learn how to make gin and vodka.

Some of the old cages on display at the entrance to the new Fur and Feather cocktail bar in Melton EMN-210712-121538001

Bruce told the Melton Times: “We were in a 10 by 10 shed at Brentingby when we started out and we were ready to expand.

“We needed more space and people expect a certain level of comfort and space to enjoy themselves in so this place is perfect.

“There is nothing else in Melton like our cocktail bar and it is proving popular since we opened up last month.”

There has been an intention to retain the heritage of the building, with customers greeted at the front door by rows of cages which were once used by market traders for their poultry.

Customers pictured enjoying a night at the new Fur and Feather cocktail bar at Melton Livestock Market EMN-210712-124339001

Original market signs are displayed on the walls, advising buyers to wash their hands after handling the animals and to pay for lots at the fall of the auctioneer’s hammer. And the bar itself is called Fur and Feather.

“We thought it was important to retain the heritage of the building,” added Bruce.

“We open from 5.30pm with a happy hour and we are applying for a late licence so we can stay open later.”

The relocation of the company follows three years after the launch of Round Corner Brewing, which is sited just a few yards away.

Brentingby Gin owner Bruce Midgley at his new Fur and Feather cocktail bar in Melton EMN-210712-121558001

Melton Borough Council has plans to set up a Food Enterprise Hub at the cattle market site to build on the area’s reputation for food and drink excellence.