Work has commenced on the £12m Scotch whisky distillery project in Leith, Edinburgh, Scotland.

The 40m high distillery, under construction on the quayside near the Royal Yacht Britannia, is expected to open in 2022.

Muckle Brig co-founders and friends, Patrick Fletcher and Ian Stirling conceived the facility a decade ago.

During construction, the project could create up to 30 jobs.

Port of Leith Distillery will comprise two copper stills manufactured by Speyside Copper Works, as well as mash tuns and tanks manufactured by LH Stainless.

Once operational, the distillery will have the capacity to produce nearly one million bottles of single malt annually.

Additionally, the distillery could create 50 employment opportunities in the region once opened.

Sterling said: “We have always been passionate about whisky and it’s been a long-held dream for us to create an amazing, modern Scotch whisky distillery in our home city. It began ten years ago as a mad idea over a dram when we were working together in London and it grew from there.

“The catalyst was finding the location – we were approached by site owners Ocean Terminal and we could immediately see the potential. The site is not big – around a third of an acre – but the location is phenomenal, and we worked closely with Threesixty Architecture in Glasgow to develop the design.”

Several international private investors are funding the project.