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Castletown Mill distillery building approved

Organic Architects and Dunnet Bay Distillers have announced the approval of a building warrant to convert the historic Castletown Mill in Caithness into a distillery.

It will be the brand new home of Stannergrill Whisky, the latest edition to Dunnet Bay’s portfolio which includes Rock Rose gin and Holy Grass vodka.

King Charles had previously expressed desire to see the building saved, and the conversion will get underway in April of this year. Run by Claire and Martin Murray, the distillery will become a part on the Highland whisky trail, with a bespoke visitor facility on the North Coast 500.

Martin Murray commented:  “The heritage of the building grounds the new Stannergill Whisky in the character of its location. Locals remember working and living in the building and King Charles once said he ‘could not bear to see the Castletown Mill become more and more deteriorated.’ Exciting times are ahead, and I am particularly pleased that we are able to show that historic buildings can be given a new life.”

Organic Architects, first established in 2009, is among the first architects to design a number of new wave craft whisky distillery projects across both the UK and the world. 

Its founder and director Andrea Wise said on the conversion: “We want to see Castletown Mill flourish again not only as a whisky distillery but also as a visitor destination to be enjoyed. The former grain mill is prominent alongside the route of the North Coast 500, yet it has lain empty for decades. It has a heroic scale: it contains impressive large internal volumes which would never be built in a new distillery. Our architects and designers have beautiful plans to revitalise the building. It is made from local Caithness stone, which makes it particularly robust as befits a local distillery which will hopefully occupy the building for generations to come.”

20 February 2023 - Bradley Weir