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Issue 42 - Peak practice

Whisky Magazine Issue 42
September 2004

 

This article is 12 years old and some information provided may be time sensitive. Please check all details of events, tours, opening times and other information before travelling or making arrangements.

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Peak practice

Adrian and Alison Murray are combining business and pleasure by selling whisky to tourists in England's Peak District. Dominic Roskrow reports

It's not actually what you might expect to stumble across after a hard day's hiking in one of Britain's most popular tourist resorts – a shop specialising in the finest malt whisky.

But everything about The Wee Dram in Bakewell, Derbyshire, defies expectations.

It's the brainchild of Adrian and Alison Murray, who opened the shop some six years ago and haven't looked back since.

The Wee Dram is the result of partly passion and partly instinct. There is a rationale to its location, but it's not a conventional one.

“When I was young I remember going in to a shop in the Waverley Centre and seeing a row of Connoisseur's Choice bottles all from different distilleries and all of different ages and I thought how impressive it was,” says Adrian.

“I thought we needed something like that in England. We were living in Walsall at the time and we decided on Bakewell for a few reasons.

Firstly, people tend to browse in shops in a place like Bakewell rather than rush past as they might in Birmingham.

“Second, people tend to be in a better frame of mind and have the time to sample and enjoy the whisky.

“And thirdly, most people visiting the Peak District, which is the most visited national park in the world, will come to Bakewell. The other thing that made our minds up was the fact that statistics show that people come back to the area time and time again. The average number of visits
per person is four. More people might go to Mount Fuji but they tend to go only once.

A...

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