Stockport Gin considering expansion as business couple struggle with work-life balance
- Stockport Gin owners Paul and Cheryl Sharrocks struggle with work-home balance
- Couple are considering expansion as the business grows rapidly
- Preparing for their first Christmas as Stockport Gin
Stockport Gin owners Paul and Cheryl Sharrocks have serious expansion plans in mind as they struggle to keep up with their growing business.
The couple started their home-run business this year and have already sold more than 3,000 bottles.
Cheryl explained how Stockport Gin came about: “So, we both worked full time in other jobs, Paul worked for an architect and I had a little hairdressing business.
“We’ve always loved gin anyway but it was like a bit of a hobby and we’d go to gin bars and try all the local gins. Everywhere seemed to have its own gin apart from Stockport.”
The distillery is their family home, with Cheryl working full-time for the company and Paul still working full-time Monday-Friday in Manchester.
Cheryl said: “Because it is in the home, we can’t avoid it! So we’re up in the evening until late at night, bottling or labelling and then we do events most weekends, probably two or three events sometimes on a weekend.
“It is full on. I suppose it is hard but eventually we would like to have more of a work-life balance.
“We’ll definitely need to expand at some point. We’ve already gone from using the garage to having to get a storage unit. The next step will be that we have to move out completely but its just when and how that happens.”
The couple say they have been taken aback by the popularity of Stockport Gin.
“I think the gin market is popular anyway so we knew it would do alright, but I don’t think we ever imagined that we’d sell as many as we have already. We set very conservative targets and we’d met them after three months,” Paul said.
Cheryl said: “We’re seeing a massive increase in sales already, so I think come November and December it will go a bit crazy.
“So that’s the immediate plan to get through the next three months and make sure we’ve got enough gin.
“Then we will more than likely be expanding in January so we will need to take on one or two members of staff to help us out. Which, at the same time we will probably need a premises as we couldn’t really have someone working in our home.”
Paul and Cheryl have their own Stockport Gin website, where they sell various items from bottles of Stockport Gin to themed mugs and prints.
Stockport Gin is also sold in Selfridges, which happened very quickly. Paul said: “We just found the right person to speak to and sent them a sample, chased them and it just so happened that I was working down in london one day and one of the buyers said “oh im free on this day”, and luckily enough I was there and Cheryl jumped on a train, and sat down with him. Placed an order that evening.”
Cheryl continued: “Yeah, so it sounds almost too easy”.
Stockport Gin is stocked in Selfridges and local pubs and bars, and comes in three different bottles: Original, Giant Leap Edition and Pink Edition.