Iain McArthur, warehouseman at Lagavulin Distillery on Islay, marked his 40 years in the whisky business on 4 August 2010. He was presented with a certificate signed by distillery managers who had worked with him at Lagavulin over the last 40 years.
Iain has become a celebrated figure to thousands of devotees of Lagavulin, especially those who make the pilgrimage to Islay and participate in his warehouse tours.
Iain was born into a farming family at Ardtalla, on the eastern coast of Islay a few miles north of Lagavulin. His uncles, grandfather and many of his relations had worked at Lagavulin over the years: one of his uncles had worked at Lagavulin for 50 years. Iain started working at Port Ellen distillery, up the road; and when that closed, he transferred to Lagavulin.
Now as ever, when his work at the distillery is finished each day, Iain goes to work on his croft, returning home only when darkness falls.
Now in this video interview http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ro3HKp_pOwM to mark his 40 years in the business, recorded with whisky writer Dave Broom, Iain talks about his origins on Islay, life many years ago when the summer break in distilling left time for families to cut peat as a fuel for the winter, his love for Lagavulin, and what he does now at the distillery - including the 44 year old cask of Lagavulin that he shares with fortunate visitors to his warehouse.