Raasay’s long association with the Clan Macleod is recorded back to the 16th century when the title of the island was first granted to MacGilleChaluim by the Bishop of the Isles. Down the centuries the clan has left its mark throughout the island from their original sea fortress at Brochel Castle to the Georgian grandeur of Raasay House.
A proud island clan they have seen their fortunes ebb and flow. But it was their Jacobite support in the ‘Forty-Five’ that brought brutal Hanoverian retribution down on the island after Culloden and ultimately led to depletion of the clan’s estate. In 1846 this led to the impoverished clan chief John Macleod selling the island and leading his clan in the tide of the forced emigration of the Highland Clearances to settle in far-off Tasmania.
Now the Isle of Raasay Distillery has opened a new chapter in the island’s history, bringing new life to the island landscape and rekindling old links. So it was fitting that we marked the recent historic ‘Clan MacLeod Parliament’ visit to Raasay of around 200 members of the – now multinational – Clan Macleod by filling our specially-prepared Macleod Whisky Cask.
Painstakingly painted in the famous Macleod tartan by our own Calum Gillies & Mary Grieve, it now sits proudly in our Raasay warehouse awaiting the clan’s return in four years to sample and bottle its contents.
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