Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Malt whisky breaks world record at Edinburgh auction

A Bonham's auctioneer inspects the bottle of Glenfiddich whisky
Image caption A Bonham's auctioneer inspects the bottle of Glenfiddich whisky

A bottle of whisky auctioned to celebrate the life of Scotland's oldest person has broken a world record by being sold for more than £45,000.

The 55-year-old Glenfiddich single malt was put on sale to honour Janet Sheed Roberts, granddaughter of Glenfiddich distillery founder William Grant.

In August she marked her 110th birthday at her home in the Scottish Highlands.

So much of the whisky has evaporated or soaked into the barrel there was only enough left to fill 15 bottles.

Eleven of these, one to celebrate each decade of Janet Sheed Roberts' life, are to be sold at auctions across the world over the coming 12 months to raise money for charity.

The proceeds of the bottle auctioned by Bonhams in Edinburgh will go to support Water Aid.

Ms Roberts was born in the last year of Queen Victoria's reign on 13 August 1901.

She still lives around the corner from the Glenfiddich distillery in Dufftown.

Image caption Janet Sheed Roberts, 110, is the granddaughter of William Grant, Glenfiddich distillery founder

The whisky bottle features an aquamarine Cloisonne medallion monogrammed in gold by Barnard & Westwood, the Royal Warrant-holding printers.

It was sold in a leather box which is to replicate Ms Roberts' travel trunk, complete with a Scottish deer horn toggle.

The previous world record for a sale of a bottle of single malt whisky at auction was £29,700.

The latest bottle was expected to fetch £30,000 but sold for £46,850

It went to a private collector from the UK, via a bid made over the internet, at Bonham's Sale of Whisky in Edinburgh.

Bonhams head of whisky, Martin Green, said: "It's a great privilege to have sold a bottle with such a distinguished pedigree and for such a good cause. We area all delighted."

Peter Gordon, the chairman of Glenfiddich and the great-nephew of Ms Roberts, said: "My great-aunt has witnessed great change at the Glenfiddich distillery over the past 110 years, so it seems fitting to honour her remarkable life in this way."

In November 2010 a 64-year-old single malt sold for almost £300,000 at auction in New York, but the price included a special decanter.

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