PROPOSALS for the creation of a distillery and visitor centre in Luss have been given the go-ahead by planning chiefs.

The village's old smokehouse and surrounding buildings on Church Road will be transformed into the tourist destination after the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority approved the plans.

Around 70,000 visitors are predicted by year three of the Glen Luss Distillery project, and as many as 29 new jobs could be created, including a range of modern apprenticeship opportunities.

READ MORE: 70,000 annual visitors set for new Glen Luss Distillery

The National Park Authority's decision was confirmed on Friday, subject to a number of conditions such as restrictions on the use of the main building which will house the distillery and brewing operations, a detailed landscaping plan for the site being submitted prior to work commencing, and the provision of at least 60 car parking spaces.

A report of the decision states: "The proposed design is of high quality and the scale, siting and materiality would preserve the character and setting of the Luss outstanding conservation area and nearby listed buildings.

"The proposal would not materially increase traffic to Luss and would provide satisfactory access and parking, including for bicycles.

"The development would not be at risk of flooding, would not result in the removal of any trees and would not harm the landscape or the site’s ecology which the proposal would ultimately enhance."

Helensburgh Advertiser: The Glen Luss Distillery project founders Daniel Lewis, Trystan Powell and Patrick ColquhounThe Glen Luss Distillery project founders Daniel Lewis, Trystan Powell and Patrick Colquhoun

Five public objections to the plans were received.

A post on the Glen Luss Craft Brewery and Distillery Facebook page on Monday said: "This is a major milestone in our journey to bring our vision for the first experimental brewery and distillery, on the shores of Loch Lomond, creating craft drinks and experiences to life.

"As we reflect on the last year, 2020 played hard ball, and 2021 looks like it will bring its own challenges, but that will not stop us. Although Covid has dented our plans we are on course to open to the public and start laying spirit down in the latter part of 2021.

"2021 is shaping up to be a great year, we are literally fizzing (again) with excitement and simply cannot wait to welcome you to Glen Luss later this year."

We'll have more reaction to the decision in this week's Advertiser - out on Thursday, February 25.