The Clan Forbes Society has partnered with Thistle Dubh Enterprises and Jamie, Lord Sempill, of Clan Chief Tours to create a bespoke Forbes ancestral tour for twenty people in August 2020.
Craigievar Castle was the achievement of William Forbes, son of William Forbes, 4th Lord of Corse and brother of Patrick, Bishop of Aberdeen. William achieved international trading success in the Baltic states, based in the city of Danzig later known as Gdańsk,Poland. This earned him the nickname of “Danzig Willy.” Forbes purchased the partially-completed Craigievar Castle from the impoverished Mortimer family in 1610 and finished the building in 1626. Sir William, 10th Baronet of Craigievar and 19th Lord Sempill, gave Castle Craigievar to the National Trust for Scotland in 1963. The tower was renovated from 2008 to 2010, using a a traditional lime-based harling coating that returned the castle to its original shade of pink. The castle includes a Great Hall, musicians’ gallery; Queen’s Bedroom; and several splendid plasterwork ceilings. The castle contains a collection of Forbes family portraits and furnishings dating to the 17th and 18th centuries.
Built in 1947, the Speyside Cooperage in Craigellachie, Aberlour, is the only working cooperage in the United Kingdom. Each year, the cooperage produces and repairs nearly 150,000 oak casks used by the surrounding Speyside Whisky distilleries, as well as distilleries elsewhere throughout Scotland. You will be able to watch the highly skilled coopers at work.
The Dowans Hotel is a small Victorian mansion house near Aberlour built for John Cummings, the owner of Cardhu Distillery, in 1888. Dowans House remained a private family home for 50 years and was requisitioned by the British Army in 1939 to serve as an officers’ mess. After the war it was bequeathed to Aberlour Orphanage and closed in 1967. The property was purchased and converted to a hotel in the early 1970’s. The hotel currently includes the formal Spé Restaurant, the casual 57 Restaurant, and the whisky bar The Still where guests can choose from 400-plus whiskies from Speyside, across Scotland.
For more information on the 2020 Clan Forbes Tour, see https://www.clan-forbes.org/2020tour