Have a beer… in the church?

What is the weirdest place that you had a beer in? I guess, that during teenager years, they could have been quite extraordinary 😉 But have you ever had a beer in the church?

I know it can sound a little controversial. But is it really? In the Scottish cities you can see elderly ladies having glass of wine under glorious church tower or teenagers drinking beer next to the stained glass windows. How is it possible?


Aberdeen has a lot of churches. Beautiful, old buildings. Many of them. Too many? Not all of them were properly taken care of and some got abandoned and ruined.

That’s why there was an idea to put the churches on the market, sell the properties and make something from them. And so, now you can see more often that the new life is coming into the old, empty buildings, that used to be churches.

In Aberdeen, the most famous ones are Slains Castle – dark, gothic pub and Soul – casino bar. There is also Pearl Lounge, that is on the same street as our flat, but I haven’t been there yet 😉


You can find similar situations in the whole Great Britain. Churches are changed into cafes, museums, bookstores, restaurants. Even into pubs and supermarkets. In English Westbourne, the methodists church, after three years of being empty, was converted into Tesco supermarket. Edinburgh is full of places located in the old churches.

It seems that you can experience it also in other western countries. Brussels Chapel of Birgittines is an Art Museum now. American old temple in St.Louis was converted into Ivory Theathre. Even in Poland – in a small town Wielsządz, you can find a club Rink-Weis, which came into being from a church dated at the end of XVIII century.


According to the internet sources, there is over a dozen of churches in Aberdeen, that were converted into other places. Some of them are flats and offices, but those the most popular are pubs and bars. But what are you supposed to do in a city, where every square centimeter of living and office space is at a premium? Where the prices of the apartments are the highest in Scotland and close to those in London, and flats disappear from the market in a blink of an eye?


There were for sure some changes in the way people think about certain things. Despite the fact, that British society is full of believers, conversion of the old churches into busy pubs didn’t cause any protests. You can’t deny, that beautiful, majestic buildings and colorful stained glass windows bring a special atmosphere into the local pubs. Even, if those building were holy places before. Another important thing is that old churches are usually main architectonic and cultural objects. Is the beer drunk in the former church going to have a new, special meaning?

People say, that the place is holy when there is sacrum inside. If it was abandoned then building is just the building and it’s better to make it useful than to let it become the ruin.

The question is – what is the best way for that?

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