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TITLE
George Grant on Family Traditions in the Whisky Trade
EXTERNAL ID
GB232_MFR_GEORGEGRANT_20
PLACENAME
Ballindalloch
PERIOD
1980s
CREATOR
George S. Grant
SOURCE
Moray Firth Radio
ASSET ID
1660
KEYWORDS
distillers
distilleries
Grants of Glenfarclas
audio

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George S Grant (1923-2002) was chairman of Glenfarclas Distillery in Speyside for fifty-two years. His ancestor, John Grant, had purchased the distillery back in 1865 and it has remained in the Grant family ever since. George's son, John LS Grant, is the current chairman. In this audio extract, originally recorded for 'Moray Firth People' in 1983, George talks to Sam Marshall about the employment of families in the whisky trade.

Interviewer: The whisky business has always been one in which family traditions played a big part. How much did you see of that? Did you employ many members of the one family?

Oh you mean employees and ?

Interviewer: Yes.

Yes. Oh yes. Pre-war days it did. You must remember in this country up until 39-45 war the population was fairly static in the North here, roundabout the Speyside, Moray, Banff. People didn't move around a great deal. Farm employees moved from one farm to another, from a parish maybe twenty miles, or thirty miles was about the most. Of course, because of the war and people being called up, they moved all over the place. But pre-war days, yes, the same family sort of worked in the same distilleries. We at one time, I think, had about five brothers and brother-in-law all working for us.

Interviewer: Was there much transfer of jobs? I mean, did they work for you in the winter time and work for somebody else in the summer?

Well, pre-war days, you see, with the distilling industry only working about five or six months, from September to April, yes, people were employed for the season and then paid off. You have to remember again at that time there was very little building in the winter time because of frosty weather, so you got mason labourers and people working in distilleries as maltsmen in the winter time and going back to either farming, road making, building, in the summer time.

Interviewer: Did you ever know anybody who'd been several - whose family had been several generations in the one business?

Yes, well as I said, we had - there was one fellow who was a mason to trade who was at the building or rebuilding in 1896. I, I remember him quite well working as a stillman with us, and he only died about '46 I think it was. And his family, at one time, I think we'd four of his sons working for us. The last one retired a couple of years back and his daughter still works for us

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George Grant on Family Traditions in the Whisky Trade

1980s

distillers; distilleries; Grants of Glenfarclas; audio

Moray Firth Radio

MFR: George Grant, Glenfarclas Distillery

George S Grant (1923-2002) was chairman of Glenfarclas Distillery in Speyside for fifty-two years. His ancestor, John Grant, had purchased the distillery back in 1865 and it has remained in the Grant family ever since. George's son, John LS Grant, is the current chairman. In this audio extract, originally recorded for 'Moray Firth People' in 1983, George talks to Sam Marshall about the employment of families in the whisky trade.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: The whisky business has always been one in which family traditions played a big part. How much did you see of that? Did you employ many members of the one family?<br /> <br /> Oh you mean employees and ?<br /> <br /> Interviewer: Yes.<br /> <br /> Yes. Oh yes. Pre-war days it did. You must remember in this country up until 39-45 war the population was fairly static in the North here, roundabout the Speyside, Moray, Banff. People didn't move around a great deal. Farm employees moved from one farm to another, from a parish maybe twenty miles, or thirty miles was about the most. Of course, because of the war and people being called up, they moved all over the place. But pre-war days, yes, the same family sort of worked in the same distilleries. We at one time, I think, had about five brothers and brother-in-law all working for us.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: Was there much transfer of jobs? I mean, did they work for you in the winter time and work for somebody else in the summer?<br /> <br /> Well, pre-war days, you see, with the distilling industry only working about five or six months, from September to April, yes, people were employed for the season and then paid off. You have to remember again at that time there was very little building in the winter time because of frosty weather, so you got mason labourers and people working in distilleries as maltsmen in the winter time and going back to either farming, road making, building, in the summer time.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: Did you ever know anybody who'd been several - whose family had been several generations in the one business?<br /> <br /> Yes, well as I said, we had - there was one fellow who was a mason to trade who was at the building or rebuilding in 1896. I, I remember him quite well working as a stillman with us, and he only died about '46 I think it was. And his family, at one time, I think we'd four of his sons working for us. The last one retired a couple of years back and his daughter still works for us