Tam's Tall Tales

- Plan to Restore Historic Whisky Distillery On Ice

Kettetpans Distillery

Plan to Restore Historic Whisky Distillery On Ice
The projects to restore a ruin known as "the birthplace of Scottish whisky" appears to be heading for the buffers.

Kennetpans distillery in Alloa, dates back to the early 18th century. The distillery was once the worlds' largest and helped found two iconic brands that are still thriving today- Haig and Jamesons.

A dispute over tax between the former owners and the government led to the company's bankruptcy and the closure of the distillery in the middle of the 19th century.

Bryan Frew, who has owned the site for twenty years has expressed frustration that despite glowing endorsements from leading whisky writers, as well as malt experts extolling the historical importance of renovating the site, there has been "little interest" in its proposed revival.

Mr Frew said: "We have been disheartened about how little interest has been shown, especially when you consider it is linked to one of Scotland's biggest exports. We get more hits on the website from visitors from abroad than we do from Scotland. We contacted the Scotch Whisky Association twice and they sadly haven't responded to either letter. No one gives a damn. It seems to be like most things - if it is on your doorstep then you tend to ignore it."

Plans to stabilise the now ruined building were launched last year after a charitable trust was founded aiming to raise awareness and much-needed funds.

Despite requests for support from some of the country's leading conservation bodies and private organisations, the project has received grants of only 60,000, a combination Historic Environment Scotland and Heritage Lottery Fund cash. The stabilisation project will finish next year implementing vegetation clearance, some targeted building consolidation work on masonry that looks close to collapsing, plus interpretation boards detailing history about the distillery to visitors. But there are no funds to do more.

Please give me whatever feedback comes to mind via tamfromrampant@gmail.com.

Tam O'Ranter
March 2016

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