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Artist's impression of Dal Riada Distillery

Argyll & Bute Council has approved plans for a new £4.5m distillery on the banks of Campbeltown Loch.

The Dal Riata Distillery is expected to be operational in 2024 and will have a capacity of 850,000 litres of pure alcohol per year. It will also include a museum, visitor centre and retail outlet.

It is named after an ancient kingdom that once spanned Western Scotland and will produce single malt Scotch using barley grown at Dunnadd Fort, historic capital of Dal Riata.

The distillery is expected to create around 20 jobs and offer trainee roles for those seeking a career in the whisky industry.

Dal Riata will be run by South Star Spirits, a new business founded by Iain Croucher – owner of independent bottling company North Star Spirits – along with fellow directors Ronnie Grant and David Stirk.

Ronnie Grant said: “We have been humbled by the positive reaction we have received from both local people and the wider whisky community. Campbeltown is a special little place which is certainly on the up and we can’t wait to become a part of its bright future.”

Whisky production in Campbeltown is indeed on the up – Dal Riata is the area’s second new distillery to receive planning permission in as many months. Whisky bottler and blender Brave New Spirits will construct a carbon-neutral facility at the former RAF Machrihanish airbase, which sits under four miles from Campbeltown.

Also expected to start operations next year and powered by 100% green renewable energy sources, Witchburn Distillery will produce unpeated, light peated and heavily peated single malts, with an initial capacity of two million litres of alcohol per year.