Neighbors of the Winsors, favorite of Queen Victoria
The first licensed Lochnagar distillery was set up on the north side of the river in 1826 by a former illicit distiller. That operation was burned down by fellow smugglers aggrieved at one of their number ‘going legit’, but it was rebuilt, so that in 1845 when Begg built his distillery on the south bank he called it New Lochnagar. The north-bank distillery had closed by 1860 and Lochnagar continued to prosper although the Abergeldie Estates consistently refused to sell the distillery the grounds it occupied, preferring to see value being added to their land through the erection of extensions and new buildings necessary for Lochnagar’s continuing development.
The distillery became a trust for Begg’s grandchildren, then a limited company, and was rebuilt in 1906. In 1916 it was sold to DCL. Most of the 1906 structure disappeared in the next rebuilding in 1963, although the malt-barn and the kiln, out of use since 1966, still survive, the latter reflecting evocatively in the distillery pond on bright, windless days.
The distillery is now owned by GuinnessUDV following a complicated series of mergers and takeovers.
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