An application for a new strip club in Aberdeen has been unanimously rejected by moralist councillors.
The owners of Shooters, a snooker hall on Chapel Street, had applied for a variation of its licence to allow adult entertainment and dance facilities for a separate business area called Silhouettes.
The application had attracted a number of objections from local residents as well as from a neighbouring night club and a strip club.
Councillors eventually agreed with convener Marie Boulton to reject the application on the ludicrous grounds of protecting children from supposed harm. Afterwards Councillor Boulton explained the actual moral reason and the ludicrous excuse cited:
We can understand how anxious people are with the number of adult entertainment properties there are in Aberdeen.
We had to make sure we had a robust case for refusal and we felt there hadn't been due diligence in considering the effect of the amenity on the local children at schools, churches and youth groups. We felt that had been completely missed by the
applicant and we felt to refuse on those grounds was quite significant.
We are very pleased with the decision we have made.
The statistics were quite alarming. We would have been on a par with London for clubs such as this had this gone ahead. When you look at that per head of population I think it sends out the wrong message for Aberdeen.
Prolific British exploitation filmmaker Stanley Long has died, aged 78. Long died of natural causes on Monday in Buckinghamshire.
Dubbed the King of Sexploitation , Long produced and/or directed a series of successful X certificate movies between 1958 and 1983. His director's credits featured:
Sex and the Other Woman
Sex Through the Ages
Adventures of a Taxi Driver
Adventures of a Private Eye
It Could Happen to You
Adventures of a Plumber's Mate
Long was also hired by other filmmakers to work on their features, such as Roman Polanksi who approached Long to complete camera-work on his movie Repulsion . Recently, Long worked with his company Salon and made it one of the most popular
post-production facilities in Europe, working on blockbusters such as V for Vendetta and Batman Begins .
The Family Planning Association is most famous for establishing the UK's network of contraception clinics. It is now set to start selling sex toys, games, DVDs and other products online claiming to help improve the nation's sex lives.
The charity has launched www.desireandpleasure.co.uk as a good and ethical alternative to what it believes are the bad and ugly practices of the growing number of online sex shops. All profits will go to the FPA to support its charitable
work across the UK.
FPA business development manager Terry Hawkins said:
The internet has created a new era of freedom for people to buy sex products and toys. Just as innovations like the Kindle and downloadable books have kick-started the 50 Shades of Grey phenomenon, people also like the anonymity and choice that the
internet offers for exploring their sexual desires.
However, we're increasingly concerned by some of the common practices in this sector and believe there is a need for safe and trusted place where people can shop with confidence.
The practices on FPA's hit list include online remarketing of sex products. This targets people with explicit advertising even when they are no longer browsing sites of a sexual nature, potentially exposing children using a family computer to
The FPA is also boycotting products with offensive names and packaging, or those that have violent or aggressive connotations. It also changes any product descriptions that it feels are unnecessarily explicit.
A new attempt to allow Scottish councils to ban lap dancing clubs on moral grounds is to be launched.
Sandra White of the SNP previously made an attempt to shut down the clubs supported by her party's then minority administration, but was defeated by 76 votes to 45. This time, the SNP has an overall majority and their plans to give councils the powers to
refuse adult entertainment licences would almost certainly go ahead.
'Justice' Secretary Kenny MacAskill has already met Ms White to give her new proposals his blessing.
At the moment, lap dancing clubs need only a public entertainment licence. The new move would create an adult entertainment licence to be issued by councils and it would be up to them to set how many establishments would be acceptable, and that could be
none at all.
White, the MSP for Glasgow Kelvin, claims that lap dancing exploits women and has links to prostitution. The MSP said:
I feel so strongly about this and that is why I am going down this route. It would give councillors the choice to say if one lap dancing club is too many. Under this legislation, they would be able to decide that and not risk being taken to court by lap
dancing club owners. It would not be mandatory and the decision would lie with each local authority.
Scottish Tory chief whip John Lamont said the party would not be backing the latest plans and added:
Many of us took jobs in bars or shops to help pay our way through university, or other points in our lives. To shut the door on those who wish to work in such establishments is wrong. People may well have moral objections to their existence, but no
one is forcing them to go inside, or even to walk past them.
It is important that the SNP is not allowed to erode freedom of choice as yet another value they want to abolish from Scottish society.
The best way forward is to ensure tight regulation is in place so no one is being exploited and everything taking place is legal.
Coventry could find itself at the centre of a huge national debate if it votes for a ban on lap
dancing clubs, a meeting heard.
The city council is looking at a possible ban on sex clubs and has launched a a 3 month public consultation to supposedly find out what the public thinks.
A council meeting heard the city could become a test case nationally and could be the subject of a judicial review if it decides on an outright city centre ban.
Coun Phil Townshend, cabinet member for community safety and a lawyer, told a cabinet meeting he was braced for a long legal battle.... BUT . ..he ludicrously claimed: I'm not setting myself up to be the bastion of public
The current policy allows up to two sexual entertainment venues in the city centre, and none in the rest of the city. There is currently only one, Heat, in the City Arcade.
In a somewhat surprising change of heart, the third licensing attempt has proven lucky for a Leamington nightclub's bid to
provide regular lap dancing.
Warwick District Council's regulatory committee voted by five to four in favour of granting Shades Gentleman's Club in High Street, Old Town, a sex establishment licence which will allow lap dancing and pole dancing at the premises from 11pm to
3am from Tuesday to Thursday and until 4am on Fridays and Saturdays.
The committee had heard representations from several objectors who had raised the usual bollox 'concerns' about the safety of residents including female students, its proximity to the Hindu Temple in High Street and the supposed detrimental
effect the club could have on the regeneration of the area.
Ian Besant, the solicitor representing applicants and owners Robert and Lisa Ransford, argued that the business had been run as a strip club for four years before new legislation came in and there had been no complaints or issues with the club.
He pointed out that neither Warwickshire Police or Environmental Health had raised any objections to the application.
Putting forward the proposal to grant the application, Councillor George Illingworth said there was no solid evidence the club would affect the area in the way objectors had suggested.
A condition of the licence will be for club logo to remove the female silhouette that forms the 'A' in SHADES.
Interestingly councillors at the meeting asked for their votes to be individually recorded. This gives a clue that perhaps councillors have realised that recent European legislation seems to have made it illegal to refuse licenses on some of the
trivial moral justifications that have councillors have used in the past. Perhaps councillors, aware of these laws, wanted to ensure that their vote for the licence was recorded, to ensure that they are not individually held to account, should a
failed licensee decide to sue the council.
A City of London nightclub has been shut down under repressive new lap-dancing laws after its shows offered more fun than the
The owners of Charlie's Bar, the only venue to offer lap-dancing in the Square Mile, were prosecuted for holding more lap-dancing nights in four months than it was allowed over the whole year.
The club near Tower Hill was refused a sex entertainment venue licence last year by the City of London Corporation, which claims such venues are damaging to women. It is allowed to hold 11 lap-dancing nights a year under an exemption to new laws
making it illegal for sex entertainment venues to operate without a licence. But police discovered 14 were held in four months from September, with CCTV showing that some of the shows turned into rather more intimate and illegal sexual
The bar has now had its premises licence revoked and its owners have been fined £ 31,500 for operating a sex entertainment venue without a licence in one of the first prosecutions of its kind. The manager also
had his personal licence suspended for six months.
Edward Lord, miserable chairman of the City's licensing committee, spewed:
The corporation is determined to make the City a safe place to live, work and socialise. We will not tolerate licensed premises acting outside the law.
Police have admitted that they do not have any evidence to support a claim that lap dancing clubs may
contribute to sex offences.
Inspector Ian Drummond-Smith, from Devon and Cornwall Police, made his claim in a letter to Cornwall Council in March. He was objecting to an application to open a new lap dancing club in Newquay.
But, in response to a Freedom of Information (FoI) request for evidence, the force said there was no recorded information held .
The application for a lap dancing licence at the Kiss nightclub was refused permission in May after the inspector's objections were received by the council's licensing committee.
The FoI request asked what evidence he had for a claim in the letter that those leaving the premises having been subject to highly sexualised performances may be at greater risk of committing sexual offences .
I cannot prove any link, nor did I claim to prove any link. I said at the beginning of the hearing that we could not prove it.
I will concede that the letter was a bit ambiguous, but I still believe it is an inappropriate place to have a sex club in an area which already has a higher-than-average number of sex offences.
A Leamington old town nightclub twice refused a pole dancing licence has made a third attempt to reopen for adult
Shades in High Street had its second application to operate as a sex entertainment venue turned down by Warwick District Council in March on the bollox grounds of its proximity to houses and Leamington's Hindu temple.
Ward councillor Alan Wilkinson (Lab, Leamington Brunswick) said he was surprised , adding: The reasons for it being rejected haven't changed, it is in a residential area. I hope the committee will support its previous decision.
Cllr Wilkinson is among Labour and Green Party nutters campaigning to cap the number of sexual entertainment venues in Warwick district, alongside the Rev Christopher Wilson, priest-in-charge at All Saints' church, Leamington.
Nutters who launched a failed bid to ban lap dancing in Leeds are refusing to take defeat lying down.
MPs, councillors and religious leaders had joined forces to call on Leeds City Council to to restrict the number of venues in the city or to ban them outright. But after being briefed about the legality of imposing restrictions on grounds of
morality, the authority granted all seven clubs new licences last month.
The nutters have now launched an online petition calling on the council to reconsider.
Leeds West MP Rachel Reeves, reiterated her morality concerns:
I don't believe that these sexual entertainment venues should be located on our busiest city centre streets, especially adjacent to civic and religious buildings.
Residents, visitors and children should be able to journey through the city centre without encountering the sex industry and at the moment that is just not possible.
I want Leeds to be seen as a welcoming, family friendly city and I do not feel that the proliferation of these clubs in such prominent locations sends out a positive image of our city to visitors.
Moortown councillor Rebecca Charlwood, who led the initial nutter campaign, added:
It's particularly disappointing that Leeds City Council did not take action to reduce the number of these clubs as many other cities across the country have done.
We have the power to say where they should be and how many of these clubs is appropriate, if you take pride in your city it's a common sense policy.
Offsite Update: Empress Rachel - We Will Get There In Leeds.....
An interesting read. MR Hall notes that it it difficult to get juries to convict in obscenity cases, but rather misses the timely point that it easy to get successful prosecutions via a big stick and carrot approach to plea bargaining
An interesting newsletter from a law firm discussed legal issues arising Leeds City Council considering the lap dancing licences for the
7 clubs in the area.
First of all it noted that an existing licence is consider in law as a protected possession in human rights law:
It has been accepted that a licence is classed as a possession capable of protection under Article 1 of the First Protocol of the European Convention on Human Rights.
This clearly states that a person has a right to peaceful enjoyment of his possessions and the case of Tre Traktorer Aktiebolag v Sweden (1989) 13 EHRR classifies a licence as something capable of protection.
Not something that can councils can take away on a moralist or feminist whim.
Secondly there are European requirements imported into UK law that impose standard conditions on councils when considering licence applications:
The Provision of Services Regulations [S.I. 2009/2999]. Regulation 24(1) imposes three important tests highlighting that any refusal must be:
Surely this would allow failed applicants to ask a court 'exactly how necessary was it for a council to refuse a license for a venue 200m away from a school where the operating hours don't overlap?'
The law firm noted that all 7 clubs in Leeds got their licences despite a high level of opposition from MPs, councillors and Object.
A lap dancing club has been given permission by magistrates to perform so-called Stag on Stage sessions.
Spearmint Rhino went to court to challenge restrictions put in place by miserable Leicester City Council's new licensing regime for sexual entertainment venues in the city.
Bosses of the club appealed against city council regulations prohibiting audience participation in performances.
Julian Skeens, representing Spearmint Rhino, said the provision of Stag on Stage sessions was standard practice in the industry. He told the court the session consisted of a bridegroom-to-be taken on to stage by a lap dancer and singled out for
special attention. He said:
It's the case of a young man on his stag night who agrees to do something he's a bit embarrassed about the next day. It's almost de rigeur. It is a bit of harmless fun.
Absolutely no sexual activity. Some titillation, yes, some fun with it, we certainly hope so. That's why Spearmint Rhino is the world's largest lap-dancing empire.
Mike Broster, head of miserableness at Leicester City Council, told the court the regulations were in place to try to protect people. He said the regulations were also deigned to try to ensure there would be no sexual activity within lap dancing
Chairman of the bench Margaret Bowler said Stag on Stage sessions should be allowed as long as certain rules were adhered to. These include that the customer should be fully dressed, the lap dancer should be dressed and there should be no
touching by either party.
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