Holyrood Distillery

Situated next to Holyrood Park, Holyrood Distillery sits within a 184-year-old Category-B Listed former Victorian railway building which was renovated and extended to accommodate the distillery and visitor centre.

Location:  Edinburgh
Client: New Make Ltd
Cost: £5m
Completion: 2019

The building was previously a goods warehouse for St Leonard’s Station, the terminus of Edinburgh’s first railway, the Edinburgh and Dalkeith Railway.

Blyth & Blyth provided Civil, Structural and Building Services design services, as well as carrying out the Principal Designer role on the project, which included the coordination of the process design into the building design.

The project consisted of three main elements:

  • The alteration of the existing Grade B listed building to accommodate the main process plant and equipment, and areas associated with the visitor experience.
  • The construction of a 2-storey extension, to house the reception, shop and tasting area.
  • The construction of a new external plant area to house the boiler and chiller plant and equipment associated with the process.

Key challenges

The upgrade to the utilities to accommodate the additional electricity and gas demands associated with the Distillery operation, and associated program issues with statutory bodies reacting to suit the time scales of the projects.

Working within an existing building which had challenges in respect of:

  • Dealing with the unknowns that arise during the opening up stages of the project
  • The installation of the process equipment into the space and ensuring that maintenance access provided for the future operation of the facility.

Constraints with installation of services to the existing yard, including below ground effluent and spillage containment chambers, due to the amount of services present which included 4 HV mains cables, surface and foul water sewers crossing the site.


The restoration of the existing building to accommodate the new visitor experience in the City of Edinburgh was achieved whilst taking account of the sensitive nature of the location and the complexities of working within an existing building.

 This has created a stunning new facility providing tasting areas, operational distillery and visitor experience that has long been missing within Scotland’s Capital City.