Freud, Walton Street, Oxford, tel 01865 311171Reuse content
CHRIST in the Holman Hunt apse vault painting looks down over his domain - the long rows of pews and the Pre-Raphaelite stained-glass windows, not to mention the Sunday-night salsa dancing and huge pizza oven in the nave of the church. ( His image can't see it, but He must also be aware of the liquor store in what used to be the vestry). For what was St Paul's, Oxford, is now Freud arts cafe-bar, which, along with cocktails, focaccia and ciabatta offers an eclectic array of delights. Martin Amis was reading here recently, following in the footsteps of jazz quartets, art exhibitions and fashion shows, and if the management gets its way, happy couples will soon be able to get married and hold their reception in this deconsecrated yet strangely calming place. And then there's the outside for the wedding photos: a neo-classic Parthenon-esque portico, overlooking a mini terrace scattered with tables. The Church of England must surely be regretting its lost sheep by now.