A family from County Durham started their own artisanal gin distillery, inspired by one of the region’s best-known legends.
The Dragon Slayer Distillery is based in Low Dinsdale, just outside of Darlington, and was created by father and daughter team Paul and Yasmin Gibson, with Yasmin’s partner William Sandick as the Master Distiller.
Its first gin, Sir John Conyers London Dry, takes its name from the “legendary Sockburn dragon-slayer”.
Yasmin said, “Gin is my dad’s drink and my favorite drink and we love to try new ones, which is why we decided to create our own.
“We were influenced by Sir John Conyers after visiting his chapel at Sockburn Hall, which is just three miles from our distillery. We thought it would be a fitting tribute to him and the folk story of him slaying the Sockburn worm. “
Local folklore tells of the exploits of Sir John Conyers, a knight from a wealthy family who allegedly killed the beast with his falchion, a bladed sword, which is on display at Durham Cathedral.
Yasmin added, “We want to share our little slice of dragon slayer folklore and feature forgotten stories to remind people of County Durham’s incredible history whether or not it actually happened.
“Each of our gins will be part of the Dragon Slayer Guild, where each will tell the story of a different Dragon Slayer, then join the guild. Sir John Conyers is the first, and we plan to release a new flavor and a new legend every year.
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