A RESTAURANT bar based at a landmark Southampton church is under new ownership.

The Vestry on Commercial Road has been acquired by the Bedford Place Pub Group, it has been announced.

Based in the Grade II listed former church, boasting exposed limestone brick walls, inset skylight windows and a steeple, the building sits just opposite the Mayflower Theatre and is said to be in a "prime location", being based only a few minutes' walk from Southampton Central station.

Bedford Place Pub Group, who already have a well-established portfolio of ten venues predominately based in Southampton, say they have big plans for their most recent addition.

Daily Echo:

Its new co-owner, Piers Kannangara of the Bedford Place Pub Group, said that they were “thrilled to acquire the freehold of this iconic site in such a prime location.

"We want to build on its close proximity to the Mayflower Theatre, whilst also catering as a go to destination within the city centre for locals wanting both quality food and drinks.

"The building also lends itself perfectly for the use of a variety of events including weddings, which it already has a license for.”

The Vestry is now set to be renamed and is expected to open its doors this September following a significant refurbishment.

The group are no strangers to diversifying venues as their existing businesses consist of late night bars and live music venues as well as the fast growing XOXO brand.

Nick Earee, the Divisional Director of leisure property specialists, Fleurets, said that he was “delighted to have dealt with the sale of this unique site to a very experienced operator and I look forward to seeing it develop."