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The Isle of Harris distillery announced on Friday (November 9th) the appointment of their first apprentice distiller, school-leaver Rebekah Morrison.

Rebekah, of Bowglass in North Harris, is the first apprentice distiller to join team of Isle of Harris spirit-makers and the wider distillery family. She had already undertaken work experience at the distillery while still at school, and continued to work on holiday and weekend casual jobs.

Rebekah said: “I had a lot of encouragement to apply from family and friends and I was also very keen to learn the process of distilling. Whisky production in particular fascinates me, but it was never something I had thought would be possible for me to do, especially not here at home.

“Being a distiller is definitely the career path I want to pursue and I’m very excited about what the future has in store. The people and being a part of the community makes the island home for me so it’s amazing to have this chance to stay and work right here in Harris."

In a statement on Friday, a spokesman for the distillery said: “With the future of our island at the heart of everything we do, Rebekah’s new role embodies our ambition to create secure long-term employment here in the Outer Hebrides, particularly for young people who wish to remain in the community and set down roots of their own.”

“We’re confident that this young woman will thrive in her apprenticeship and will go on to inspire new generations of young people to remain here in the islands, carve out careers and play their own vital role in ensuring our island's survival and revival as the decades go by.”

Rebekah is pictured starting her new role in the spirit room and with fellow-distillers Domhnall Macleod (left) and Billy Fraser.