By James Atkinson
A Victorian has succeeded in his application for a liquor licence at a former fundamentalist Christian church.
Geelong property valuer Gareth Kent will transform the former Mount Zion Strict Baptist Chapel in the city centre into a café, after receiving approval from both Heritage Victoria and Geelong City Council.
"The recently gained permit is for an 'on premises licence' which does not restrict us from serving alcohol without food, however the emphasis will be on premium beverages and coffee of high quality," Kent told TheShout.
"It's not going to be another beer barn, put it that way."
He said the refurbishment would maintain the building's beams and decorative features, as well as the baptismal font, which will be covered with glass and filled with some of the artefacts of the old church.
"The premises will provide a venue for coffee, long lunches and cafe style eatery, and provide a place for people to have a Friday night knock off drink, without having to go down to the Geelong waterfront or a pub," he said.
Located in the city centre, Kent said the 'Chapel on Little Ryrie' will open in February.