Smithwick's Experience In Kilkenny To Shut Permanently
As reported by The Irish Independent, the Smithwick's Experience in Kilkenny is set to permanently close its doors, with the tourist attraction closed since March 2020 as a result of COVID-19.
The closure results in the loss of jobs and will have a knock-on effect on Kilkenny's tourist offering.
The award-winning tourist attraction was held in high esteem by visitors to the city as well as locals, as it presented the social history of the Smithwick's brewery in Kilkenny.
The attraction has been closed since March of last year due to lockdown measures, and suffered greatly as a result of being unable to attract international visitors, which have been the mainstay of the centre.
The Irish Independent reported on a statement from a Diageo spokesperson, who said that the company is saddened to announce the closure.
The Irish Independent quotes the spokesperson as saying, "Over the past 12 months we have evaluated all available options, but unfortunately we have come to the decision that it is impossible for us to adapt the experience for it to be a viable business and experience going forward.
"As a result we are saddened to announce that the Smithwick’s Experience Kilkenny will be closing permanently."
"Smithwick's is proud of its Kilkenny roots and its strong connection to the people and the city.
"We are going to take this time to look at a range of options for the long-term sustainable future for the building; to support Kilkenny's vibrant creative culture and growth economically and socially.
"We remain committed to supporting the pubs and bars of Kilkenny and the wider south-east region as they reopen."
The original brewery in Kilkenny shut in December 2013, having manufactured Smithwick's, Kilkenny ale, Budweiser, and Harp Lager, before reopening as a visitor attraction in late July 2014.
Previously, the site had been owned by Franciscan friars and was named St Francis Abbey.
The friars had also brewed beer before they were dissolved during the Reformation in 1537.
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