Lagavulin marks 200 years with special Islay legacy
INVESTMENT to mark the 200th anniversary of Lagavulin will ensure Islay’s status at the heart of Scotland’s story is secured and shared with the world.
Whisky producer Lagavulin concluded its bicentenary celebrations on Hogmanay 2016 by launching a special one- off single cask edition of just 522 bottles to raise funds to invest in Islay community projects as part of the distillery’s legacy to the island community.
All proceeds from the legacy bottling will be distributed to local projects, including a donation of £ 310,000 for Islay Heritage.
The funding will support Islay Heritage in its mission to build a comprehensive story of Islay’s past based on the island’s archaeological sites and monuments. This will include enhancing accessibility and interpretation of these sites for everyone to enjoy. Lagavulin will also donate £60,000 to sup- port the Finlaggan Trust, which is responsible for maintaining the island’s most famous historical site at Finlaggan, the home of the Lords of the Isles.
The Lagavulin 200 legacy will also make significant contributions to other Islay groups including the local swimming pool, cyber café, arts and festival organisations as well as a new partnership with the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds to restore and conserve peatlands on the island, adding up to a total community legacy of £ 580,000. Nick Morgan, Diageo Head of Whisky Outreach, said: ‘ We have had a fantastic year celebrating the 200th anniversary of Lagavulin, both on Islay and with the hundreds of thousands of people around the world who adore the whisky.
‘Islay and its remarkable local community are at the heart of Lagavulin, that’s why we were determined there should be a legacy from the anniversary which would directly benefit the island and its people.
‘ We believe our contribution to Islay heritage is not only of great significance to the island itself but is an important contribution to conserving and promoting the history and heritage of Scotland, which is particularly fitting given that 2017 is Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.’
Steven Mithen, trustee of Islay Heritage and Professor of Archaeology, said: ‘Islay Heritage is hugely grateful to the Lagavulin 200 Legacy for the support it is providing to further our knowledge about the archaeological sites and monuments on Islay. This investment in our heritage will greatly benefit both the local community and visitors to the island.
‘ While some of Islay’s sites and monuments are very well known and accessible, others are virtually unknown, difficult to find and rarely visited. There are no doubt many more waiting to be discovered which will help tell us more about not only Islay’s story but that of Scotland, Europe and the path of human culture.
‘We are delighted that Lagavulin shares our vision to reveal Islay’s past so that it can be explored and enjoyed by everyone.’
The Lagavulin 200 legacy donation to Islay Heritage coincides with 2017 being designated as Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.
The Lagavulin donation to activities and organisations supporting heritage of the island, and specifically to Islay Heritage, has been welcomed by Scotland’s leading heritage and tourism organisations.
Georgette Crawford, Lagavulin distillery manager.