Cardhu distillery upgrade approved

UK drinks company Diageo has received permission to overhaul its Cardhu distillery, the final part of its multi-million pound tourism investment to be green-lit.

The drinks giant submitted planning proposals for two of its distilleries this April and every part of its investment plans have now been approved.

The idea is to build new visitor centres at its Clynelish and Cardhu distilleries to complement a new Johnnie Walker visitor centre in Edinburgh.

Cardhu is being promoted as the famous blended Scotch brand’s ‘Speyside home’ and Clynelish as its ‘Highland home’ – with both distilleries providing the malts that make up the backbone of the final blend.

The whole investment is costing an estimated £150 million and will also include renovations at Glenkinchie in East Lothian and Caol Ila on Islay.

Cardhu was the first distillery to be acquired by John Walker & Sons back in 1893 although it had been providing malts to the company before that time.

The new visitor centre will tell the story of the distillery’s entire history, including the role of Helen and Elizabeth Cumming who ran the distillery in the 19th century.

As reported back in April, with approval now granted work should begin this year and be finished by late 2020.

As well as its tourism project, Diageo is also currently moving along with its plans to reopen several ‘closed’ distilleries such as Port Ellen and Brora which were announced in 2017.

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