CAOL Ila Distillery has been given the go-ahead to start expansion on its visitor experience over the next few weeks.

The plans for the distillery, which makes single malt Scotch whisky for Johnnie Walker, are part of a £150 million investment in whisky tourism by distilling firm Diageo.

As part of the project, Caol Ila will become the Islay home of Johnnie Walker and will be thematically linked to a new Johnnie Walker visitor attraction in Edinburgh.

Leigh Aitken, the distillery’s brand home manager, said: “This is very exciting news and we want to thank Argyll & Bute Council and all our neighbours for their support. Everyone involved is now very much looking forward to work getting underway.

“This is a major investment project that will not only transform the Caol Ila visitor experience, but will add further to Islay’s reputation as the greatest whisky island in the world.”

The plans will see a new state-of-the-art visitor experience created inside the shore-side Caol Ila warehouse, including a bar with stunning views across the Sound of Islay.

The proposals were shared with local Islay stakeholders in October, with planning permission submitted to Argyll and Bute Council in November.

Several Diageo distilleries, and the Johnnie Walker attraction in Edinburgh, will see major work undertaken as part investment plans totalling more than £150m across Scotland.