McCorleys fire up Hinch distillery

McCorley Mechanical and Electrical crank up their major electrical project deliveries with a bespoke full-scale installation for brand new Hinch Distillery...

McCorley Mechanical and Electrical’s recent project at the £15m Hinch Distillery, Ballynahinch showcase’s the outstanding quality of works carried out by the company’s expanding electrical division.

The 30,000 sq ft, two-story building includes a large whiskey and gin distillery producing the Craft Hinch Irish Whiskey and Ninth Wave Gin brands. It also features an interactive visitor centre, coffee shop, retail area, outside courtyard space and multi-purpose events spaces.

Previously known for their mechanical works, McCorleys added an electrical division in 2016. Under the guidance of their new Electrical Contracts Manager, Stephen O’Loughlin, the division is growing in size and scope. From maintenance to full electrical installations, McCorleys are fully resourced to fulfill schemes large and small.

The electrical works amounted to 75% of the Hinch Distillery scope carried out by McCorleys. Stephen said, “This was a highly bespoke job involving specialist process control, ATEX and LEL compliant equipment along with bespoke architectural lighting. As well as the full domestic installation of general power and lighting, low voltage switchgear, fire alarms, intruder alarm, CCTV, door access control and so on.

“The biggest challenge was in the ATEX area that housed the stills. This was obviously a potentially explosive environment so precautions needed to be made. Suitably rated and protected electrical equipment were used throughout to prevent the possibility of ignition from a spark, or other source of heat.

“Also, the installation of internal lightning protection in addition to external protection was required to safeguard against potential explosive reactions.”

A sophisticated process control system added to the complexities of the project, as did the building’s architecture. “There were a lot of architectural features that didn’t lend themselves to be serviceable, which meant onsite co-ordination was paramount,” said Stephen. “We met weekly and then fortnightly with the design team and closely collaborated with the main contractor, Corramore Construction, which helped build strong relationships between us. There was a lot of co-ordination and collaboration with Corramore who were great to work with. They implemented stringent Covid-19 measures and controls during the restrictions period which ensured the site was a safe environment to work in, with limited downtime due to these measures.”

The mechanical aspect of the project although smaller than the electrical installation nevertheless stood out for its installation of Calor BioLPG tanks. The first widely-available renewable gas for homes and businesses, Calor BioLPG was chosen in a bid to reduce carbon emissions and increase the distillery and visitor centre’s environmental performance.

Unlike conventional LPG, which is a by-product of oil and gas exploration. BioLPG is made from recycled materials, including recycled waste and residue materials and sustainably-sourced renewable vegetable oils.

This high-profile project is a serious feather in the cap for McCorley Mechanical and Electrical. It’s expected to become a major tourist attraction, able to accommodate more than 100,000 visitors a year.

Trained guides will bring visitors on an interactive and informative journey that will include a history of Irish whiskey and its unique distilling process, tutored tasting sessions, a specific gin tour and the opportunity to produce and bottle their own gins.

Commenting on the successful job, John McCorley, Director said, “It was a complicated project but well designed and thought-out by Semple McKillop pre-construction, which simplified the installation. We are delighted to include this prestigious project to our portfolio. It illustrates how far the capability of our relatively young electrical division has developed. From small to large schemes, we now have the resources to scale up or down to deliver world-class installations – both mechanical and electrical.”

Project team…
Client: Hinch Distillery Ltd Main Contractor: Corramore Construction Electrical Contract
Manager: Stephen O’Loughlin (McCorley Mechanical and Electrical)
Mechanical Contract Manager: John McCorley (McCorley Mechanical and Electrical)
Consultant Engineers: Semple McKillop

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