First look: Norwich booze bosses open new academy on World Gin Day

Gyre & Gimble Gin Academy in The Royal Arcade, Norwich. Gyre & Gimble team, Dave, Craig Allison, Ror

Gyre and Gimble's brand new gin academy opens in Norwich's Royal Arcade on Saturday, June 11. Pictured Dave, Craig Allison, Rory Smith and Kelly - Credit: Brittany Woodman

A city-founded booze company will celebrate World Gin Day this weekend by opening the doors of its brand new academy for the first time.

Gyre and Gimble has been run by Craig Allison and Rory Smith since 2019 from its Charing Cross bar, distillery and gin academy.

At the new Royal Aracde store, customers can take part in two-and-a-half hour academy sessions to educate guests about what ingredients make the best gin, enabling them to distil their own concoctions which is then bottled for them to take home from Saturday, June 11.

The Royal Arcade will give the company a great opportunity to attract new customers, Craig said.

"The location, footfall and ambience that the Royal Arcade offers shoppers will make our business much more of a destination experience," he added.

"People will also be able to enjoy some of the other delights on offer in the arcade. Our gin academy sessions are great fun to do in couples or small groups and will bring an extra dimension to a day out in the city.

"We’re aiming to have Norwich’s largest selection of spirits under one roof, which will give shoppers a real reason to drop in and see what we have on offer."

Footfall figures for the Royal Arcade have continued to soar, as more than two million people visited the arcade in the year ending May 22.

This year alone, more than 700,000 shoppers have used their spending power the arcade.

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Simon Ashdown, director of LPC1 the firm which runs the arcade, said: "I am delighted that Gyre and Gimble is opening. Without a doubt, its proposition is unique to Norwich and bang on trend as it meets the post-Covid consumer trend for experiential leisure."

Gyre & Gimble Gin Academy in The Royal Arcade, Norwich. Dave making gin. Pictures: Brittany Woodman

Gyre and Gimble's Dave making gin at the new Royal Arcade academy in Norwich - Credit: Brittany Woodman

Carol Cooper of Norwich-based Francis Darrah Chartered Surveyors added: "We have had a great deal of interest from retailers wanting to relocate to, or start up their business in, the Royal Arcade.

"With Lauren Rose Interior Design and Gyre and Gimble enjoying successful openings, it really does show off what a jewel in the crown the Arcade is for the Norwich city centre shopping experience."