The Scotch whisky producer Whyte & Mackay paid £1.1m to finance the clear out it made of top management last year, according to a press report.

Scotland's Herald newspaper said that payments included £194,000 to the highest-paid director - almost certainly former chief executive Brian Megson - as "compensation for loss of office".

A further £914,000 in payments is likely to have been made to four other directors who left the group in the months after Megson, the Herald said.

They were sales director Iain Gilchrist, finance director Ron MacEachran, human resources director Alan Mackie, and operations director Ian Palmer.

The figure was gleaned from the financial accounts for Whyte & Mackay Limited, the operating subsidiary of the Whyte & Mackay group.