Breathing new life into Swansea’s old copperworks

Artist impression of the proposed Penderyn Distillery at Swansea's historic Hafod Morfa Copperworks site.
Swansea's former Hafod Morfa Copperworks site will be transformed thanks to £3.5million from the National Lottery.

The multi-million pound grant, raised by National Lottery players, will pave the way for world-famous Welsh whisky brand Penderyn to create a visitor attraction. It is expected to attract up to 100,000 visitors a year.

The 12.5acre former copperworks site dates back to 1808. In its 19th-century heyday, copper ore from as far afield as North America, Cuba, Australia and South America was smelted at the site, putting Swansea – or “Copperopolis,” as it was fondly known – at the centre of a global web of copper trading connections.

Its multi-million pound transformation will include:

  • a new-build visitor centre with shop, tasting bar, exhibition space and toilets
  • the creation of a distillery, offices and VIP bar in the fully refurbished Grade 2 listed powerhouse building
  • a new barrel store in part of the Grade 2 listed rolling mill
  • a new-build covered walkway connecting these buildings

The Penderyn Experience

It will also be home to the Penderyn Experience whisky tour that will encourage people to learn about the site's rich history and global significance.

“The Hafod Morfa copperworks will be given a chance to return to its former glory thanks to National Lottery players and play a vital role, once again, in the fortunes and history of Swansea and its community.”Baroness Kay Andrews, Chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Wales

Baroness Kay Andrews, Chair of HLF in Wales, said: “The Hafod Morfa copperworks will be given a chance to return to its former glory thanks to National Lottery players and play a vital role, once again, in the fortunes and history of Swansea and its community.”

Penderyn owner, Nigel Short, added: “Penderyn wants to be a part of the regeneration of the copperworks and repeat the success we already have with our Welsh single malt whisky and other products. These plans are incredibly exciting for us as a business and for Swansea as a forward-thinking city.”

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