A LOCAL brewer was forced to wait over 12 months to receive a planning permit for his Mair Street brewery despite the fact a brewery had operated in the same space until the end of 2014.
Peter Parry from Athletic Club Brewery approached the City of Ballarat with the intention of opening the brewery at the 47 Mair Street East site on February 16 2015, which had been vacated by Rebellion Brewing.
After being told the planning permit for the premises had been revoked by Rebellion Brewing, Mr Parry attempted to apply for a new permit, but was told a condition of the permit was that the brewery be nominated on the title of the Freight Bar, which joins on to the brewery.
However the same contractual arrangement did not exist when Rebellion operated in the same space less than a year prior.
Mr Parry said he had since been engaged in a logistical nightmare with council, in which his application had been rejected on multiple occasions.
“My business plan was based around being able to start brewing late June or early July in 2015, because the best beer drinking season is summer,” Mr Parry said. “I’ve completely missed that season.”
After being contacted by a number of media organisations, council granted Mr Parry a modified agreement on Wednesday, allowing him to open in the coming months.
Mr Parry said he had spent over $500,000 setting up the brewery and had employed two staff members. Mr Parry said if council had not made the ruling he would have had to consider leaving the premises.
“I really want to be doing it here because I see it as being a great opportunity for Ballarat, but I haven’t had an income for 18 months.”
In a statement City of Ballarat general manager of city strategy Natalie Reiter said “all parties understand this is a complex arrangement and the time delays are frustrating to the applicant”.
“It is important planning decisions follow planning law to protect all parties involved in the matter and Council works hard to balance the business needs of all stakeholders.”
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