Researchers from the University of Kent and Middlesex University have said that Soho is under threat from gentrification
and corporatisation that threatens to rob it of what makes it so special.
Their study explains how the area is being sanitised with the number of licensed sex shops in the area declining from more than 50 to just 12. These are slowly being concentrated in just a small area and almost all such venues in Soho are now
located within a small half-a-mile block.
The process of gentrification in this area has further marginalised already vulnerable groups (including homeless populations and sex workers) and the sanitisation of the area means that many populations who have lived and worked in this area for
generations will no longer be able to part of the Soho community.
Pulse and Cocktails opened its latest store just off the A12 at Rivenhall near Witham, Essex, in April.
Now the business has applied for a Sex Establishment Licence from Braintree Council which will allow it to increase the variety of its stock - adding R18 adult films and more choice of adult toys.
Graham Kidd, director of Pulse and Cocktails, has written to Braintree Council in support of the licensing application saying:
We have an excellent relationship with all the authorities where we trade and an equally good relationship with businesses, residents and other associations who are our neighbours, objections to licence renewals are non-existent.
Our stores and our customers have a positive impact all round. We provide employment within the area and other businesses and services benefit from our custom.
As we have been running our business for over 20 years with stores that all have a Sex Establishment Licence, it is important that this store is also licensed to enable us to operate it in the same way.
The external appearance and layout of the store will not change with a licence, the only fundamental change will be the amount and variety of stock available which will include the addition of adult films and an increase in the choice of adult
The business also wants to screen short DVD film trailers in store.
One objection has been raised in relation to the application since it was submitted in May.