The letter speaks for itself, but I can't resist itemising at least a few of the perks: a terrier allowance; a retriever allowance; an un-roadworthy Landrover; 2/3 of a suit annually; and free electricity as long as it comes from the water turbine plant at Balintore and not the electrical mains for which the gamekeeper would have to pay personally.
There is anecdotal evidence that the castle's turbine was still operating in the 1980's, but it is great to see from the historical record that it was definitely up and running in the 1960's.
The letter was sent on the 18th Feburuary 1963 to Mr. Neil McLean by R.P. Thorburn, the estate factor, on behalf of Lord Lyell (1939-2017) who only died relatively recently. I got hold of the letter via a friend of Balintore, Jerry Singer, via Mr. McLean's son, who apparently would be very happy for it to appear in the blog. Everyone in the chain has my deep gratitude.
|letter page 1: Balintore gamekeeper terms and conditions|
|letter page 2: Balintore gamekeeper terms and conditions|
I was speaking to the current Balintore gamekeeper only yesterday. I will have to ask if his terms and conditions still have the same charm. In 1963, Mr. McLean, if it is in any doubt, could not resist this charm onslaught and did accept the position.