The History Of Glenlossie


Former distillery manager and founder of Longmore, John Duff, at the time a local publican of the Fife Arms, sketches out the plans for a distillery. Working with architect A. Marshall MacKenzie, he designs the distillery to be independent of steam power – using a natural slope to drive a waterwheel of eight horsepower. Duff builds his distillery with the help of his friends H. M. S. Mackay, the burgh surveyor, and local procurator Alexander Grigor Allan. The partners retain their day jobs, and Duff takes on the management alone.


The distillery is prospering and Glasgow whisky blender John Hopkins joins the partnership.


With business booming and whisky popular in the colonies, the entrepreneurial Duff decides to emigrate to South Africa with his family. His plan is to set up the country’s first whisky distillery.


Duff’s ambitions are thwarted by South Africa’s president, who stands against any form of British influence. The dream disappears, along with most of Duff’s money, and he returns with his family to Elgin.


Duff breaks from the original partnership after Allan’s death, and Mackay and his nephew J. H. Hair form The Glenlossie-Glenlivet Distillery Co. Ltd. The begin to make improvements, including building their own railway siding.


The distillery closes to conserve barley during the war.


The Distillers Company Ltd. take over the running of the distillery.


A fire causes extensive damage to the distillery, though workers fight it using a horse drawn fire engine from 1862.


The fire marks the end of the Glenlossie-Glenlivet distillery company, and the distillery becomes part of the Scottish Malt Distillers.


The Second World War halts production.


A new warehouse is added, marking the first of many large scale improvements which will see the distillery’s capacity grow over 20 years.


Mannochmore is built on the same site as Glenlossie, and workers oscillate between the two.