Outlander castle whisky distillery plans get the go ahead

The plans for the distillery, which is on the Hopetoun Estate, were submitted last July.

Published 14th Apr 2021
Updated 30 th Apr 2024

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Outlander fans know it as Jamie Fraser's home, Lallybroch, but soon Midhope Castle grounds will be home to a new whisky distillery.

As well as building a distillery, the plans include details on restoring the castle, which is currently an empty shell, to eventually include visitor accommodation.

The plans, which were approved on 13 April, show the site will include a 2850sqm distillery building, service buildings, landscaping, an access road and parking.

The Midhope Castle distillery, which will become one of a small number of single malt distilleries in the Lothians, will use barley grown on the Hopetoun Estate, which already has a long tradition of growing and supplying malting barley to the Scottish whisky trade.

outlander castle distillery
The distillery plans were submitted in July 2020

Speaking at the time of the plans being submitted, a spokesperson for the Midhope Castle Distillery Company said: “We will set out to design and build a distillery that makes great whisky while addressing sustainability through every element of its architecture, its construction and its operation.

“With an innovative approach across the board we would aim to reduce our production carbon footprint to the absolute minimum, if not to zero.

“We believe that this approach goes hand in hand with producing a distinctive and characterful single malt Scotch Whisky capable of reflecting the qualities and traditions of one of Scotland’s great historic estates.”

A planning statement on behalf of Hopetoun Estates Trust said: “The benefits arising from the proposed development at this site can be delivered in a manner that enhances the setting of the Midhope Castle and surrounding area.

“The proposals provide the opportunity to provide employment within a thoughtfully designed, appropriate development and extends the tourism-offer at Midhope Castle. The development will be complementary to Hopetoun House and the Estate.”

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Fans of Outlander flock to the site in their thousands, but can only currently visit the grounds to take pictures of the castle.

Once the development is complete, these visitors will be able to access the repaired parts of the castle, which are set to be revamped to include tasting, meeting and dining rooms.

Initial work is expected to be completed in 2022 with further renovation and repairs to the castle (including accommodation) to take place once the business is established.

The castle lies on the same estate as Hopetoun House with the exterior used as a backdrop in series one and two of Outlander.

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Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne, whisky and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind is the Food and Drink Editor and whisky writer for The Scotsman, as well as hosting Scran, The Scotsman's food and drink podcast.
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