Having completed their new £140m distillery, The Macallan asked us for help with the entrance to the estate. Although the new distillery is modern, there are many other buildings within the estate that aren’t, not least Easter Elchies House, which has been there since 1700. The Macallan is not new; it has a long history, and the entrance needed to express that. The project had it’s constraints; the whin stone walls were predetermined by planning, and the entrance needed to be wide enough to allow lorries to pass in and out, giving us an eight metre hole between the pillars (it’s the road to a factory, not a stately home). Finally, health and safety legislation states that any gaps in a new gate should be a maximum of 10cm wide, to prevent careless children getting their heads stuck between the bars.
Fortunately the new distillery, and our new identity for it, are both long and wide. The logo spans the top of the gate like the distillery on the hill. To generate some perspective, we closed up the bars beneath, giving it the appearance of being larger, and in the distance. The metalwork has a traditional wrought iron finish, with the typography cast in solid metal and then gilded. The Macallan triangle motif forms the handles in the centre. Each gate leaf weighs two tonnes and is, from an engineering perspective, horribly wide; we had to import the same motors they use at the White House to get it to open properly. The plaque is cast in bronze with a baked enamel finish. We wanted to make something permanent; hopefully both the plaque and the gate will be there for a long time.