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Jumpstart: Not so secret garden

Elly Douglas-Hamilton’s family has run Archerfield since the 1960s. Now, the estate’s walled garden is helping the business to diversify into areas including brewing, events and retail, as Peter Ranscombe reports.

It’s not often that fairies crop up in conversation during an interview for a business magazine. Yet fairies are just one of the ways in which Archerfield Estate Limited (AEL) in East Lothian is diversifying and drawing in new customers.

The Douglas-Hamilton family bought the 1,000-acre estate in the 1960s and opened the Archerfield Walled Garden in 2013. As well as traditional features like a bar, café, restaurant, delicatessen, gift shop and gallery, the venue also has its own microbrewery, where Archerfield Fine Ales are created under the watchful eye of brewer Robert Knops, who also makes his eponymous range of tipples on-site.

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