When Oban Distillery celebrated its bi-centenary in the 1990s, it gifted a hogshead – 250 litres – of whisky to the local RNLI lifeboat station.
The whisky was left to mature in a warehouse for 18 years, earmarked for a fundraising venture to mark the lifeboat station’s 40th anniversary in 2012
Oban Lifeboat treasurer Les Stewart and a team of dedicated volunteers, including the lifeboat’s former Honorary Secretary Norman MacLeod, have been busy organising the final bottling and packaging.
This Tuesday past, 19th March, the first 2 of 297 bottles of Oban Lifeboat whisky were sold at Mulberry Bank
Auction House in Glasgow.
The auctioneers’ estimated bid price was in the region of £140-£180 per bottle.
At the auction, each bottle made £260.
The committee will now consider whether to sell any more of the whisky at auction – and why not – but some bottles will go on sale at Birchwood Filling Station in Oban from early April.
The retail sale price for these bottles will be decided at the Lifeboat Management Committee meeting next
Tuesday, 26th March.
A delighted Les Stewart, Oban Lifeboat Treasurer, says: ‘This far exceeded our best expectations and was way above the estimates given to us by the helpful auctioneers at Mulberry Bank Auctions.
‘I followed it online and it went from £180 to £200, to £220, to £225, to £240 to £260!
‘Both winning bids were Internet bids and we don’t know who the buyers were.
‘There is a lifeboat committee, who will be fixing the retail sale price in the next few days, which could be significantly different from the auction price.’
You have been alerted to this opportunity.
We confidently expect the number of cars using Birchwood Filling Station to increase markedly when this dram makes its appearance.
We hope the committee do not sell it short. This is a once in a lifetime fundraising opportunity, a rare whisky and the best cause. The lifeboat needs all it can get – and in this fundraiser, everybody wins.