Dagenham man turns camper van into a luxury cocktail bar

PUBLISHED: 13:13 16 January 2017 | UPDATED: 13:13 16 January 2017

Billy Spring has with his cocktail camper van together with his Dad Ian and brother Alex

Billy Spring has with his cocktail camper van together with his Dad Ian and brother Alex


Prefer it shaken not stirred? You can order cocktails however you fancy at a luxury pop-up cocktail bar – in a camper van.

Billy Spring has with his cocktail camper van.Billy Spring has with his cocktail camper van.

Billy Spring, 30, of Longbridge Road, Dagenham, has started up his own business, Custom Drinks, running a cocktail bar out of a Volkswagen Camper Van to take around to private parties and festivals.

The former Barking Abbey student, who grew up travelling Europe in his grandad’s camper van, started the business to combine two of his biggest “passions”.

“This might sound silly, but creating new cocktails and making new drinks for people is what I enjoy.

“I’ve always grown up with a camper van, as my grandad bought a brand new one back in 1971 from a showroom, so I thought it was just fitting to put the two passions together.”

His dad Ian and brother-in-law James Smith, who all use the old camper regularly, helped turn the newer model from a standard Volkswagen to a cocktail bar with a pull out roof.

“It was a hard old slog, as we bought it last November (2015) and finished it in May. We were working weekends around our day jobs to get it all done.” he explained.

After nearly two years of planning, the bar is complete and is now travelling the streets to take part in food and drink festivals, weddings and private parties, where their very own cocktails have been going down a storm. “We specialise in gin and vodka, we’ve got one called Anno Passion, which is made with special elderflower vodka,” he added.

Billy, who was a bartender for more than five years while studying at university, has landed his company a sponsorship with a gin company, Anno Distillers, to help cover the costs of creating drinks.

He said: “My other brother Alex is helping me run the business right now, as we’re trying to expand to bigger festivals and possibly a second van.”


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