New club licensed in Southend

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A new club has been licensed in Southend, which already has one dedicated lap dance club and two pubs that have occasional striptease. The club ‘Entice’ is to be located in a former nightclub. The application was presented by Mr Sutherland (applicants solicitor). Mr Weatherstone (applicant) and Mr Mal (Manager) were also in attendance.
The sub-committee noted that no objections to the application had been received from the Police. Four representations had however, been received from local residents. Two of the residents attended the hearing and gave evidence.

The application and objections do not appear to be available online, but the local press reports the following pro- and anti- views.

Alistair Cullis, campaigner

I’m a builder. I’m not some sort of feminist crusader, but I’m speaking out against this because I believe women should be given equal chances in society.

This is the 21st century and what contribution does this make?

Statistically, rapes increase around strip clubs. The figures prove that.

I feel the decision had already been made. Most of the committee is made up of old men. It’s disgusting they should to vote on women’s issues.

This will be the fourth venue of its kind here.

What kind of message does that send out? It doesn’t do anything for women’s rights. I don’t know how you can have a high-class, sleazy club.

 

Alistair Weatherstone, owner of Entice

We are seeing a shift in culture over the past few years. It’s trendy for people to go to strip clubs, and we are seeing more women as customers, too. It’s a different form of entertainment – our clubs are also used for hen dos.

To my knowledge, I have not had any complaints of heckling from anyone outside our clubs. If we did, we’d ban the people responsible.

We tend to have an older audience. That leads to less trouble. I’ve managed bars and you get trouble every week.

Here, you will be looking at a small number of people spending high, rather than filling the place and having people spending £20 each, like you get at the nightclubs.

Objectors – we feel unsafe walking past strip joints

One of the objectors to the new strip club’s licence was a woman who said she was attacked outside a similar venue.

The woman, who asked not to be named, spoke out at the licensing hearing, telling councillors: “I have been heckled and berated by people standing outside strip clubs.

“As a woman walking past these venues, I would not think ‘it’s nice inside, I don’t feel threatened’.

“I was attacked by someone leaving a strip club. Having to see my friends change their lives so much by taking different routes home is messed up.

It’s messed up that the desire to have a sex venue in Southend outweighs the desire for women to feel safe.”

Another objector, a woman from the Essex Feminist Collective, who asked only to be named as Helen, said: “I love Southend, but do you honestly expect people to be spending thousands on a strip club here when they can go into London?”

From: http://www.echo-news.co.uk/news/12906800.Strip_club_could_open_within_days_in_Southend/

Refusal No. 43: Reading club refused Sexual Entertainment Licence

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Chronicles, in Valpy Street,  applied to Reading Borough Council for a Sexual Entertainment Venue Licence. This was refused last week. This was for a restaurant to put on burlesque dancing. Much of the discussion questioned if this would be a restaurant with sexual entertainment or a sexual entertainment venue with food.

From the hearing:

Cllr Stanway: “This is one of the most historic parts of town. I’m not convinced this fits in with the cultural theme of the area. How do you respond to claims that this is an inappropriate location?”

Mr Payne: “According to council guidelines the town centre can host up to two SEVs. This location is ideal as it is small, it is not in the main shopping area making it quite advantageous.

“One should provide entertainment to all types of visitors to Reading. Currently people seeking SEV can only visit The Lodge. This provides them with somewhere else to go.”

Cllr Stanway: “I regard Valpy Street as fairly Reading central. It’s very busy in the daytime and rush hour.”

The licence was refused on the grounds that it would be detrimental to the surrounding area, given the cultural importance of things like Reading Abbey. Councillors also highlighted in their refusal that it was primarily SEV instead of a restaurant, and not restaurant with an added SEV as the applicants tried to argue.

There were 8 objections recorded in total.

See: http://www.getreading.co.uk/news/business/chronicles-restaurant-could-re-open-lap-8913551

http://www.getreading.co.uk/news/reading-berkshire-news/chronicles-refused-permission-open-lap-9053979

http://beta.reading.gov.uk/media/3118/Item-4/pdf/Item_4.pdf

Leeds strip clubs refused licence renewal still standing empty one year on

An interesting little article just published reflecting on the fact that in the wake of the ‘moral crusade’ to get a number of Leeds striptease clubs shut down (before the Tour de France), the clubs concerned still stand vacant. The article poses the question as to whether a vacant premise is worse for the reputation and image of the city than a thriving strip club. A question that might be raised about any number of premises that authorities seemingly want to drive off our High Streets: betting shops, charity shops, poundshops etc….

http://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/news/latest-news/top-stories/time-for-some-naked-ambition-over-former-leeds-lapdancing-venues-1-7215692

On the Leeds saga, see also:

https://sevlicensing.wordpress.com/2014/03/28/leeds-clubs-lose-judicial-review/

https://sevlicensing.wordpress.com/2013/12/05/three-leeds-sexual-entertainment-venues-lose-licence/

Newcastle renewal of striptease club hits headlines

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An odd one as this venue (formerly, The Purple Door) has been licensed for sexual entertainment for a few years, but it has only been recently that the owners have proposed actually using it for lap dance. Cue 30 objections, the council’s decision to renew and an onslaught of headlines in which protestors suggest this new club, opposite the railway station in Newcastle, will set the wrong tone for visitors to the city. Harriet Harman has weighed into the debate supporting the leader of the council’s view that this venue objectifies women and should not have been licensed.

Of the 30 objections, 23 were made by current and recent students of Newcastle and Northumbria universities, with a 38-name petition also raised by them against the plans.

“A new strip club is not what Newcastle needs,” a Newcastle University medical student said. “In fact it would be very counterproductive for a city that already struggles with its reputation as a extreme party venue.

“This reputation almost put me off coming to Newcastle Medical School.”

Others had concerns that the club could lead to the city gaining a “seedy” reputation.

See:

http://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/newcastle-strip-club-gets-go-8992703

http://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/vera-baird-criticises-decision-allow-90

http://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/harriet-harman-backs-newcastle-council-902834503987