End of an Era !
Well it seems like no one from here views the Ardbeg site regularly (probably too busy trying to shoot the place down no doubt...) , i didn't know where to post this as it's news and us mortals arn't allowed to post there .
This was posted yesterday on the Ardbeg site-
Dear Committee Members and friends,
As your Chairman for the last five and a half years I have thoroughly enjoyed watching our beloved Ardbeg grow from a whisky known by a few to a malt increasingly recognised across the world.
Who would have believed this could have happened when I arrived in 1997 with the backing of The Glenmorangie Company to breathe new life into a Distillery that by all measures was nearly lost forever. The transformation in those 9 years has been quite extraordinary, extremely exciting and yes, from time to time a little scary... especially when the roof of the Old Kiln blew off in the hurricane of January 1999!
The passion and enthusiasm you have shown for Ardbeg and indeed the support you have given me and the team at the Distillery has been one of the most rewarding parts of my job. Many of you have made the arduous journey to Islay to wonder along with myself at the remarkable renaissance of this proud Distillery.
In no small measure this is down to you, the Committee, who have spread the word about Ardbeg and its indomitable spirit to the four corners of the globe to the extent that the Committee now numbers some 35,000 members in 112 countries!
So it is with great regret that this note announces my departure from Ardbeg. I have been considering this for some time not because of any dimming of my passion for The Ultimate Islay Malt - more because there comes a time in life when it's quite simply time for a change.
I shall be leaving Ardbeg soon to go off to pastures new, but one thing I will always carry with me are memories of all the conversations, e-mails, tastings, discussions, debates and comradeship we have had over the years. My admiration for Ardbeg under Glenmorangie’s stewardship remains as strong as ever.
I wish my successor well and go off to my next adventure bolstered with pride in all that I and the team at the Distillery and Old Kiln have achieved together. I, of course, remain a member of the Committee and look forward to keeping in touch.
I was quite shocked at first when i read this but i wish my friend Stuart all the best where ever he may land next , he's an all round good guy , and they're few and far between , and myself and my wife are glad we can call him a friend. One thing for sure Ardbeg won't be the same without him around !
Now all that remains is cue the conspiricy theorists, rumour mongers , gossipers etc etc .......