WINE producer Holmfirth Vineyard has celebrated the completion of its new visitor centre.

The company received funding from HSBC Commercial Banking for the latest development, which will enable the vineyard owners to increase the number of wine tours and tasting sessions they offer.

The visitor centre was officially opened with a wine tasting event attended by 75 guests, including Jill Hague, HSBC’s area commercial director for Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield, and commercial manager Mark Woffendin.

Holmfirth Vineyard, founded in 2008, was the vision of husband and wife team Ian and Becky Sheveling, who were keen to escape the rat-race and fulfil a lifelong dream to produce award-winning wines in the UK.

They hand-planted 7,000 vines of five different grape varieties across seven acres – and have already started to receive expert recognition for the quality of the wine produced.

Their story was also featured on Channel 4’s Build a New Life in the Country.

To keep up with growing customer demand, Ian and Becky developed their plans to build a visitor centre, comprising a tasting lounge and restaurant as well as an “eco lodge” containing seven five-star self-catering apartments built underground.

Said Jill: “We are delighted to have supported Holmfirth Vineyard with its plans for continued growth.

“Domestic wine production is a fast-growing market, with an increased awareness and interest boosting sales, but Ian and Becky have recognised the opportunities beyond growing grapes and producing wine.

“This new development will allow them to diversify into an entirely different market, catering for both day visitors interested in tasting wine or a meal out, and the growing number of holiday makers keen to stay in the UK.”

Ian said: “It is really exciting to see the visitor centre up and running after so many months of planning.

“HSBC has worked closely with us throughout the planning and development of the centre. They have demonstrated a truly personal approach, including braving the snow and ice in the middle of January to look at our innovative plans.

“We look forward to their ongoing support as our business continues to grow.”