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Looking at the people who keep the wheels of commerce turning on the Island; features, profiles, achievements and stories with a human dimension. LEFT: A work-in-progress: Benn inside the building at the Bungalow. STEPPING UP! Betty Pie Co and Manx Cider Co take over former motorcycle museum building at The Bungalow… by Simon Richardson Entrepreneurial Peel couple, Benn and Vicky Quirk are poised to take their successful businesses – Betty Pie Co and The Manx Cider Company – to a higher level! create a real destination café for both locals and visitors. We have a clear vision about how we want it to look and have been viewing a number of locations in the UK for added inspiration.” They are due to take over the iconic buildings on the slopes of Snaefell, that were the former home to Murray’s Motorcycle Museum, and have applied for planning consent to convert the premises into a café and retail outlet with small-scale manufacturing capability on site. Due to the scale of work required before opening fully in 2020, they aim to open a fun, simple pop up canteen during the TT and MGP periods this year. There’s much to do in the cavernous former military building, which has been empty since the museum vacated in 2006, but Benn and Vicky are undaunted: “I must admit to one or two sleepless nights at first,” admitted Benn. “But we can now see the huge potential to 34 | “There is a huge amount of work to be done, but the plan is to retain the building’s character and integrity, added Benn.” Currently both Betty Pie Co and The Manx Cider company operate from business units in Peel, but the intention is to move all production to the new site. Benn, who heads up the multi-award winning Manx Cider Company, currently produces around 7,000 litres a year, which he supplies to local pubs and bars. Vicky is head of the Betty Pie Company, which produces thousands of delicious handmade pies each year. They are sold from the company’s distinctive, vintage ‘Betty’ caravan, and served at weddings, special occasions, and even huge corporate events: “The business has grown to the point where we literally can’t produce more than we do. Having both an outlet for the pies in our own café and space for a production unit on site will be great,” said Vicky. Both Benn and Vicky are examples of the new Manx artisans who are pioneering Manx food and drink. Both are committed to using the best Manx produce wherever possible. Both Betty Pie Co and the Manx Cider Co are a truly family affair, with Benn’s Dad, Mike Quirk, helping out across both sides of the business. The couple also has three young children, Luka, Mags and Illy and Sid the Cockapoo. “We know the weather at the Bungalow can be a bit wild at times, but that’s part of the appeal,” said Vicky. We want to create a unique and inviting space for people to enjoy all year round whatever the good old Manx climate throws at us!”