A Shropshire man has not let a pandemic get in the way of taking over a high street business.
Alongside his wife Maria, Derek Bowen is the new owner of Moonshine & Fuggles in Ironbridge, an independent retailer specialising in spirits including gin, whisky, rum and vodka, Midlands beers and ales, and English sparkling wines.
The unique and much-loved Moonshine & Fuggles will also offer taster evenings and pop-up gin bars for local events including corporate events, weddings and private functions, when permitted again.
Mr Bowen, who grew up in Ironbridge, has been employed at a global level with footwear companies such as Timberland and Wolverine.
He said: “I’ve been very fortunate to work, travel and live around the world, growing and developing international footwear and lifestyle brands for many years.
“We had the opportunity whilst living and working in Scotland to explore the country which included visiting many of the wonderful whisky and gin distilleries.
“We have been loyal customers of Moonshine & Fuggles and our new interest combined with my experience led us to take on this fantastic business.”
Mr Bowen explained that the couple had a lot to live up to in stepping into the shoes of Philippa to run Moonshine & Fuggles but the reception from customers and the wider community had been amazing.
“Since it was announced that we were taking over, the feedback has been great. People we’ve never even met have taken the time to welcome us, with lots coming to the shop to wish us well. People have been incredibly kind – we’d like to thank everyone for their warmth and best wishes.
“We’re now focused on continuing with all that is great about Moonshine & Fuggles, sourcing new products, and introducing a new website in September alongside local delivery.”