On the up · 12 July 2018

Say cheers to these co-founders who transformed an old coal house into a winery

Ever since their pushy parents urged these two to become acquainted, this pair of co-founders have been inseparable. 19 years on, Ian Swindells and Mary Beth Coll own a seaside craft-winery and bar located in the Isle of Man overlooking Port Erin Bay.

After refurbishing an old coal house, Swindells and Coll produce their own wine from locally grown ingredients such as elderflower, rhubarb and honey.

For the second instalment of our “I fell in love with my co-founder”‘series, Business Advice caught up with Coll to hear about why they left sunny Colorado for the rather wet Isle of Man.

When was the business founded?

We moved to the Isle of Man for what was supposed to be only 2 years back in 2011.When we are asked why the Isle of Man our usual response is the weather? with a wry grin. Our first year on the island was the wettest year on record which was an adjustment considering we were accustomed to 300 days of sunshine in Colorado.

We initially moved to the island because it made sense for Ian’s international offshore job.I wanted to feel safe and did not want to live in the Caribbean due to the potential hurricane evacuations. Ian was motorbike obsessed and has been a longtime fan of the Isle of Man TT.

Despite the weather, we managed to make it through our first winter here and we became enamored with the landscape and the people. The lack of anonymity and spirit of community was appealing and special to us. The humble pride the Manx have in their island is also an admirable trait. The warmth of the people made the winters and weather not seem too harsh.


 
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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Carly Hacon is a reporter for Business Advice. She has a BA in journalism from Kingston University, and has previously worked as a features editor for a local newspaper.

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