Whisky lover Andy Ure attended festivals dedicated to Scotland's national drink regularly and was frustrated that Falkirk didn't have a festival of its own.
He said: "I was fed up having to travel to attend whisky festivals when I had a whisky town on my doorstep. I'd had a few drams and told my wife, Kirsty, and family my plans, but I think they thought I was just full of the Dutch courage!"
The 33-year-old and his wife then went on to organise Falkirk's first whisky festival in 2016, with tickets selling out within a week and dozens of whisky distilleries and bottlers attending.
Since then, Harbro Events, which has been helped by Business Gateway Falkirk, has add Falkirk Gin Festival, Craft Beer Discovery and Love Vegan festivals to the town’s event calendar.
The company has also hosted a varied range of events from a Little Mix tribute show to a regular LGBT friendly drag queen night at Behind the Wall. This year saw the events company bring 90s boy band 5ive to town for a sold-out show.
Andy said: “We went to Business Gateway right from the start, working with an adviser and attending workshops. Our adviser helped us secure funding to work with two marketing experts who helped us make our website more search engine friendly and gave invaluable support on how to market our brand. They also helped us pull together a social media planner and showed us how to create a database of emails to receive a newsletter.
“Knowing you have expert advice at the end of a phone – or email – has been fantastic and has helped us sell thousands of tickets.”
Last winter, Andy and Kirsty bought a dilapidated vintage horse trailer and renovated it into a quirky mobile bar - The Lucky Horseshoe - which has appeared at festivals and is available for hire for private and corporate events.
Outside of Falkirk the husband and wife team also host events in Dundee, Stirling, Glasgow and Belfast but their hometown still has their focus.
Find out how Business Gateway Falkirk can help you by visiting their local pages or call 01324 808266.
Outwith the area? Find your local Business Gateway office or call 0300 013 4753.
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