Creating a stable business: From horse box to pop-up bars

The Vino Van made national headlines when it hit the weddings and events scene in April 2017, with coverage in the likes of Fabulous, Woman and Stylist magazines.

Created by Corby entrepreneur Siobhan Holmes, the Vino Van is a vintage horse box that was transformed into a mobile prosecco bar to ‘bring the fizz to a special event’.

Capitalising on the popularity of prosecco, the business idea has been a storming success, catering for weddings, music festivals, garden parties and food and drink events.

Now Siobhan is set to branch out further with the creation of four new mobile bars.

Launching in April, each of the four new bars – gin, prosecco, cocktails and the ‘fully stocked’ bar – will be covered in a sophisticated marble design and equipped with a fully functional sink, ice chest and prepping station.

Siobhan said: “Since I came up with the idea of the Vino Van, I have been overwhelmed by the response. I’ve also seen that there is a demand for other drinks such as gin in particular, which has become hugely popular in the last 12 months.

“I didn’t want to dilute the unique selling point brand of the Vino Van by offering more drinks aside from prosecco. That concept works well as it is. So, I started thinking about what else I could do.

“The Vino Van works because it is mobile and can be fully stocked and taken to an event. It has its own licences, glassware and insurances so makes life easy for the customer. It does, however, have its restrictions. For example, apart from some special exceptions, it generally can’t be used inside a venue. The new bars, because they are modular and collapsible, can be set up anywhere including village halls, marquees and other wedding venues, as well as conferences and work functions.”

Despite the bars not having been officially launched yet, Siobhan has already had interest from corporate clients looking for bars for products launches and sporting events including the Moto GP and Formula 1 Grand Prix at Silverstone. They are also making an appearance at the LoveFit music and fitness festival in Kent in July.

There are also plans to work with local gin producers Warner Edwards at a special tasting event.

Not content with being booked for other people’s functions, Siobhan is also organising a series of her own events at the S&L Football Club on Occupation Road in Corby:

“Not only do they look great and are fully functional, they really do open up so many more opportunities for my business. Now I’m looking to connect with more corporate clients, event organisers and wedding venues to see how we can work together.”

Foodie, a Street Food Night Market

On Friday 30th March, 6pm to midnight – This ‘pop-up street market’ will be held on Good Friday and feature some handpicked food and drink producers including Jelley Distilleries, Little Urban BBQ, Stony’s Pizza, Farmer Lou – Posh Pork & Lush Lamb, Sonora Taco Truck and Ridiculously Rich Northamptonshire. There will even be a DJ on hand, playing tunes throughout the night.

Pizza & Prosecco Festival

On Saturday 5th May, 12pm to 8pm – This event is being billed as ‘prosecco heaven’ in a converted marquee with hay bales for seating. Pizza will be served and The Vino Van will be showcasing a low sugar Skinny Prosecco.

Gin Festival

On Sunday 6th May, 12pm to 8pm – Try a wide variety of premium and small batch gins, as well as gin and fizz cocktails and the more traditional gin and tonic, and enjoy a selection of foods served by street vendors. A DJ will also be providing a soundtrack from the afternoon right through the evening.

“I really am so excited to be launching these four new bars. I can take them into a space, set them up in a matter of minutes – you can’t tell by looking at them that they don’t ordinarily belong there!” exclaims Siobhan.

“Not only do they look great and are fully functional, they really do open up so many more opportunities for my business. Now I’m looking to connect with more corporate clients, event organisers and wedding venues to see how we can work together.”


For more information on the Vino Van, the new bars or the Corby events, visit www.vinovan.co.uk, call 020 3432 2883, or email contact@thevinovan.co.uk.

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