Heckington 8 Sail Brewery expansion and relocation approved

The brewery is currently based at Heckington Windmill. Image: Google StreetviewThe brewery is currently based at Heckington Windmill. Image: Google Streetview
The brewery is currently based at Heckington Windmill. Image: Google Streetview
Plans to expand and diversify a Heckington business are one step closer after it received planning permission for a new building in Burton Pedwardine.

North Kesteven District Council’s planning committee on Tuesday (December 13) voted to approve the proposals from 8 Sail Brewery, which will see a new brewing, canning and bottling plant built on land known as Cede Farm off Heckington Road.

The company has been based at Heckington Windmill for 12 years but owners said the site’s listed status and insufficient space prevented it from moving ahead with expanding facilities and diversifying operations.

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The new building will include a 2,000 litre capacity brewery, a canning and bottling facility, toilets, offices and store area as well as roof mounted solar panels.

Officers said the applicants completed a thorough assessment of the plans. “The proposals comprise an appropriate form of rural development,” they said.

“In terms of employment investment… officers are satisfied that there will be no significant adverse impacts which weigh against planning permission being granted.”

However, a number of local residents have concerns including fears it would be industrialisation of the site, that it would be built too close to homes, and that it would create a lot of noise and increase traffic.

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No statutory consultees including highways objected to the plans.

Andy Topp, from Burton Pedwardine, said: “This proposal, which is not from a village resident, seeks to insert an industrial installation into a rural residential setting.

“The noise from production activities and on site traffic movements will severely impact the residential amenity of the adjoining four residences and the additional traffic will impact a further 40 residential properties within 500 metres of the site.”

He said residents feared conditions applied to the permission, which include noise, waste water and solar panel requirements, would not be adhered to.

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Anthony Pygott, from the brewery, said the business was “successful” and had survived in a “very challenging climate” during COVID which saw 200 breweries close.

“It’s economically viable and we want to push it forward,” he said.

“To do that we need to be able to expand our capacity, and to can and bottle beer, to actually reach other markets, and the sustainability is key to what we want to do.”

During the meeting, councillors questioned the storage of waste water in a 2,000 litre septic tank, the locality of produce and whether the company could supply its own barley.

However, they passed the plans by 11 votes in favour, with only one abstention.