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Rare whiskies go under the hammer in online auction - with proceeds going to Scottish charity The BEN

Whisky fans can still bid on a range of rare and exclusive releases, as part of an online auction to raise money for The BEN.

Published: January 5, 2021

The BEN have collected a range of rare and exclusive whiskies that are under auction - with proceeds going to raise much needed funds for  people of the drinks industry in Scotland who have fallen on hard times due to Covid-19.

The charity supports people of all ages who have worked in the licensed trade, with beneficiaries receiving annual financial assistance as well as discretionary one-off grants for emergency situations.

The BEN has been inundated with applications for support due to the devastating impact Covid-19 has had upon the industry.

To continue with this support, the charity must generate funds annually, mainly from events and donations.

As it is not possible to hold events at this time, the team have collected a range of rare whiskies, donated from across the industry, to auction off.

What's in the auction?

Rare whiskies include a Glendronach PX single cask, a rare 22 year old Hazelburn (1 of 1), a bottle (signed by Alex Bruce) of the first ever Single Cask from Ardnamurchan distillery, a ‘first ever’ Imperial Gallon of Imperial (1 of 1 from a demolished distillery), 25 bottles of 14 year old Ardbeg from Whisky Cellar and virtual events such as a
Glenfarclas online tasting to be enjoyed by six friends.

The lots have been donated by whisky companies to support the BEN, and all of the money raised will go directly to people in the licensed trade at this time.

Off the back of the huge success of the first and second Ambassadors’ Collection auction in previous years, The BEN have organised their own charity auction which will be hosted online by Whisky Auctioneer until 11 of January.

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The Whisky Ambassadors’ commented: “The Scottish hospitality industry is what makes Scotland a great place to visit.

"Our pubs and hotels are legendary, we hear it first hand every time we attend whisky shows across the world.

"The whisky industry has always worked closely with hotels and pubs across Scotland.

"When Covid hit we could not begin to understand the stress it would put on our friends and colleagues within the hospitality sector.

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"This year, more than ever before, we had to help. That is why Whisky Ambassadors from across the UK collaborated, at short notice, to generously donate one-of-one editions, single cask bottlings, virtual tasting experiences and bottles signed by industry celebrities to raise awareness and funds for The BEN in Scotland.

"We wish for a highly successful auction that will raise lots of funds for a great charity.”

Over the past two years The Ambassadors’ Collection auction has raised thousands which was donated to The BEN to support those in the trade in Scotland.

John Hutchison, President at The Ben, said “The BEN works tirelessly to help disadvantaged colleagues from the Hospitality sector.

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"2020 has been one of the hardest years for our sector and as a consequence we have helped a record number of beneficiaries, at the financial impact on us as a charity is significant, and all monies raised from this auction will go straight to helping individuals in Scotland”

Chris Gardner, Chief Executive at The Ben added, “We are touched by the continuing support and generosity of the trade in these extremely trying times.

"There are some superb bottles up for grabs and we thank everyone who has contributed once again”

Iain McClune, founder of Whisky Auctioneer, said: "Never has there been a more important time to form partnerships and support those in need in the hospitality industry.

"We're proud to host the auction of these charity lots, which include an impressive collection of liquid and some incredible once-in-a-lifetime whisky experiences.

"I have no doubt they will attract widespread interest from whisky lovers and collectors across the globe."

How to access the auction

Online bidding began on Wednesday 23 December and will finish from 7pm on Monday 11 January.

To register to bid in The BEN auction, visit the Whisky Auctioneer website.

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Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind writes for The Scotsman on all things food and drink related as well as hosting Scran, The Scotsman's food and drink podcast.

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