Many thanks to friend of Balintore Castle, Steve Scooby Fairweather, for finding the probate record for David Lyon, the first owner of Balintore Castle. In fact, Steve has been piecing together the history and ownership of Balintore Castle with a zeal far exceeding my own, and I hope to present some more of his findings on this blog when I find the time.
You can see that David Lyon died in Nice, France 12 years after the construction of Balintore. At the time of his death, Lyon owned a property in town (31 South Street, Park Lane); an English country estate (Goring Hall); and a Scottish shooting lodge (Balentore Castle). The contradicts earlier anecdotal information I had heard that Lyon sold the castle one or two years after commissioning it: providing quite a mystery, but one has to go with the documentary sources however less interesting the story!
The value of the estate was revised in 1876, perhaps some hidden assets had emerged. In any case, there is no doubt that David Lyon was an extremely wealthy man. I have included one other probate record for comparison. Indeed Lyon is portrayed in Disraeli's diary as a 'celebrated yachter' and a 'very rich' man. I am quite certain David Cameron has no such diary entry about me. :-)