UK Sex Shop News

 2009

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30th December   

Taboo in Hove...

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Taboo expands from Brighton to Hove
Link Here

Taboo shop, BrightonA new adult boutique selling upmarket erotic goods is about to open in Hove.

A banner above the new Taboo store in Blatchington Road declares: Hove is about to get sexy.

Owner Tim Robinson has given the shop a £50,000 refit ahead of its opening on January 18.

He already runs a Taboo boutique in Surrey Street, Brighton, and Lust at Gardner Street in the city centre.

The new Hove store replaces the former Ignition sex shop which closed in May 2009. Ignition raised eyebrows when it first opened in 2003.

Robinson said he has turned the property form a traditional sex shop into an upmarket adult boutique: The fact that the shop already had a licence was a factor in us choosing the site. We have spent a huge amount of money on refurbishing the shop and we are a completely different style to what was previously there. We already have an award-winning shop in Brighton and we see ourselves as a high end adult boutique, not a sex shop.

He said he has plans to open more shops in other parts of the country over the next year.

 

9th December   

Merry XXXmas...

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Nutters whinge at light hearted Ann Summers slogan
Link Here

We wish you a horny christmasA marketing campaign for Ann Summers sex shops wishing customers a Merry XXXmas provoked a row with the Church of England. Religious nutters branded the shop's Christmas slogan - in the windows of all its 138 stores - as insensitive and crass and called for it to be removed. There was also anger over another Ann Summers slogan calling on customers to Have a horny Christmas .

The Very Reverend Chris Dalliston, Dean of Newcastle, said: Without wanting to be a killjoy, [...BUT...] my feeling is that it is insensitive, at best uncomfortable, and at worst a crass marketing slogan. Many people see Christmas as a sacred and special festival.

That isn't to say ordinary fun and human enjoyment shouldn't be part of it, but people need to be sensitive to the feelings not just of the Church, but of the many people for whom Christmas is an important part of their relationship with God.

One has to accept this is a time of year which is of great importance commercially. But it is about having awareness of the spiritual significance of Christmas as a celebration of Christ's birth. Let's not throw the Christ child out with the bath water.

Last night the boss of Ann Summers said she would investigate the complaint - but also pointed out that the company was proud of its marketing campaign.

Jacqueline Gold, chief executive at Ann Summers. said: Our festive campaign was designed to put our customers in the Christmas spirit, with a model accessorising our lingerie with a pair of reindeer horns. The accompanying slogan is a light-hearted play on words, which if questioned by children, can be explained by the fact the horns are being worn - after all, Rudolph plays a large part at Christmas time. We are proud of our tongue-in-cheek window and marketing messages, designed to make our customers smile. We aim to offer women the opportunity to feel sexy and have fun.

One or two questions have been raised about our new Christmas windows and we are listening to feedback from our customers and staff to ensure that we achieve the right balance. We value customers opinions and we will always investigate any complaints, however few and far between.'

Matt King, who passes Ann Summers every day on his way to work at Newcastle University, contacted his local councillor, Nick Forbes, to raise his concerns about the window display and to ask him to take it up with the council: I think it brings a highly sexual language to the high street. Everyone who can read, whether they are four years old or 80, is being wished this message, which they may not want. I would have thought the council would be concerned that this would end up being a seedy end of town as a result.

Councillor Forbes said: I can see how this would be extremely offensive to Christians at this special time of year. I would have thought that sex shops would be aware of the potential offence they could cause and I would urge them to stop using the slogan immediately.

A council spokesman said: We have received a complaint about this window display. It is in poor taste and inappropriate in a main shopping street, but we have no powers to make the shop owners take it down.

 

3rd December   

Fairer Fareham...


Adult DVD Empire

  DVDs,
Blu-rays,
VoD,
Sex Toys


adultdvdempire
 

Sex shop licences halved in price in Fareham
Link Here

Fareham Borough Council logoFareham council bosses voted to halve the price of a sex shop licence at the Licensing and Regulatory Affairs Committee.

Any sex shops coming to the area would have been hit with a licence fee of £2,820.

However, legally they had to bring the cost down to market level almost halving it to £1,480.

The decision is to be rubber-stamped later this month.

 

1st November   

Update: When is a Sex Shop not a Sex Shop?...

Bournemouth Council ponders the question
Link Here  full story: Unfair Sex Shop Licences...Court battle over unfairly high sex shop licence charges

Ann Summers logo Bournemouth trading standards and licensing officers have taken part in a day of enforcement against four premises in the town to investigate whether they are selling sufficient sex articles to warrant a sex shop licence.

They visited Chez L'Amour at the Triangle, 18+ on Holdenhurst Road, Blue Bazaar on Christchurch Road and Ann Summers on Commercial Road, which all currently trade without sex establishment licences on the basis that they do not offer a significant degree of sex articles.

But licensed sex shop owners, who pay thousands of pounds for a licence, allege these shops are effectively unlicensed sex shops and have urged the council to investigate.

It comes at a time when a group called Large Cause Ltd (Licensed Adult Retail Group Encourage Councils to Abolish Unlicensed Sex Establishments) is taking legal action against Ann Summers Ltd on the same grounds.

In a statement, Ann Summers said they had had direct communication with Bournemouth council and been told they were not in breach of licensing laws. Chief executive Jacqueline Gold said: Allegations made against us are wholly unsubstantiated and we are confident the courts will find that there is no case to be answered.

And Jason Sherratt, owner of Chez L'Amour, said: My shop's a bit of both. I have a selection of normal DVDs and some other little novelties as well as some adult material. I wouldn't say I'm a full-on 'explicit' shop, so we just have a sign on the door warning people that there are adult things inside.

Senior licensing officer Sarah deBruin said the law was vague when it came to ascertaining exactly what was a sex shop. The definition of a significant degree of sex articles has never been tested in the courts but recent legal advice provided for Leeds City Council suggested the threshold could be placed at just 10 per cent.

Officers' findings from their visits will be reported to a private meeting of the council's licensing board on November 3. Councillors will then decide whether there is any evidence to prosecute any of the businesses and whether they want to pursue this.

 

31st October   

Bolton Untempted...

Temptations sex shop to close in Bolton
Link Here

Bolton Arms A sex shop, which caused nutter 'uproar' when it opened three years ago, is moving out of Bolton.

Temptations in Blackburn Road, Astley Bridge, has become the latest victim of the recession as bosses say the shop is not making enough money.

Nearby residents and businesses protested when the shop opened in 2006. Now owner Alan Brook, from Radcliffe, says he is sorry to leave after winning over many of the original objectors: Most of the people who objected when we got our licence are now our good friends, so it's a shame. They have realised that we just run a business, and we are not out to corrupt the people of Bolton.

Brook said there was not enough demand in Bolton to support the store. He said: We have got other shops around the North West, and they are doing fine, but the people of Bolton don't seem to want us any more.

There are nine other Temptations stores in the country, including branches in Bury, Manchester, Crewe and Halifax.

Temptations will close in the third week of November.

 

22nd October   

Nicer Champions...

Nice 'n' Naughty win European E-line award for Best Retailer of 2009
Link Here

Erotic eLine Award Jenson Button isn't the only recent British winner of a major international trophy because Nice 'n' Naughty also kept the flag flying by winning the coveted European E-line award for Best Retailer of 2009. The good news was announced at a prestigious gala dinner in Berlin attended by all the leading players in the European adult industry. This is the second year in succession that Nice 'n' Naughty has been recognised on the European stage, having been voted Best Retail Chain in 2008.

Nice 'n' Naughty directors, Simon Prescott and Trish Murray, received the award on behalf of the company. Afterwards a delighted Simon commented, I'm over the moon about this. In football terms, it's like winning the Champions League two years running. Also like football, our business is a team effort and the people who deserve this accolade most are the Nice 'n Naughty staff. It's thanks to their professionalism and commitment that we're now being seen as a top retailer, not just in the UK but also Europe. It's amazing when you think about the quality of the opposition we're up against. I'd like to dedicate this award to our staff and it was an honour to receive it on their behalf'.

Trish Murray also emphasised the importance of awards such as E-line from a customer perspective: Being able to show customers that we are recognised as the best in our industry gives them confidence that they are buying from a reputable and professional company. We have always striven to create a welcoming and enjoyable shopping experience for all our customers, of both sexes and all sexualities. I feel that winning the E-line is an endorsement of our approach and an affirmation to customers that, by shopping at Nice 'n Naughty, they're going to get choice, good value and friendly, helpful service'.

At a time of cutbacks in the industry, Nice 'n' Naughty has expanded its retail chain to 15 stores with branches in Manchester, Liverpool (2), Bolton, Warrington, Wigan, Southport, Chester, Aberystwyth, Bangor, Newcastle, Leeds, Bristol, Brighton and Wednesbury.

 

18th October   

Update: Age of Micro-Managed Lives...

Concern that age related internet sales restrictions can easily be extended to other products
Link Here  full story: Internet Age Verification in UK...UK bill to mandate age verification for internet sales

House of Lords logo A proposal that will force online retailers to take extra steps to ensure that young people cannot buy or access inappropriate goods or material will moves one step closer to becoming law. The Online Purchasing of Goods and Services (Age Verification) Bill was set receive its second reading in the House of Commons on Friday.

The Bill proposes making it a requirement for the providers of goods and services and the providers of specified facilities enabling the purchase of such goods and services to take reasonable steps, in certain circumstances, to establish the age of customers making such purchases . The proposed law refers to goods which it is already illegal to sell to people under the specified ages, such as 16 for cigarettes and 18 for alcohol.

It had previously been introduced in the House of Commons but ran out of Parliamentary time.

Some peers in the Lords raised objections to the Bill, though. The Earl of Erroll said that concerns over payments technology and over the scope of the Bill should cause concern: We must allow young people to buy things online. Many things are only obtainable that way nowadays - certainly the better bargains, he said. We must not outlaw methods of payment that will completely stop them buying anything.

The Earl of Erroll also warned that the Bill was in fact not just about age-restricted goods but gave Government the power to bar access to other materials: The second major problem refers to unconstrained powers. Clause 1(2) provides that the Secretary of State can make regulations that could extend to things that are not covered by legal ages or goods and services covered under current laws. The legal duty to comply with these laws already exists, and I do not think that Parliament should micromanage people in how they do these things. We should not be passing laws just to send a message. That is not a good idea.

 

18th October   

Window Dressing...

Morecambe sex shop asks for permission for more meaningful window display
Link Here

Lancaster City Council logo A town centre adult store has claimed sexual discrimination over its shop front window display.

Management at the sex shop, Sin-til-Late on Queen Street, have asked Lancaster City Council to vary their licence so they can create a more enticing display with lingerie, hosiery, fancy dress costumes, lotions, potions and novelty items .

They say other nearby non-licensed lingerie and fancy dress shops can display such goods, so why can't they?

Sin-til-Late is currently allowed to have a small window display of goods NOT sold in the store - including negligees - but ridiculously, say the owners, the licence prevents them from advertising items they actually sell.

The strictly over-18s store also sells pornographic DVDs, sex toys and sexual aids, but owners say these would not be placed in the window.

Council officers said that Sin-til-Late's request should be agreed.

 

4th October   

Pillow Talk Smothered...

Liquidators called in at the Pillow Talk chain of sex shops
Link Here

Pillow Talk Liquidators have been appointed by Adult Group Entertainment (AGE) following a creditors' meeting. It has been announced that the company's principal asset - the stock contained in the nine Pillow Talk stores - was worth around £70,000 at wholesale cost.

The liquidator intends to sell this as soon as possible - by close of business on Monday 5th October. The liquidator told ETO that the Pillow Talk shops, leases and licences are not included in the liquidation, as they are owned by third parties, but fixtures and fittings and the Pillow Talk name and trading style are available.

 

28th September   

Update: Market Distortions...

Licensed sex shops vs unlicensed sex shops
Link Here  full story: Unfair Sex Shop Licences...Court battle over unfairly high sex shop licence charges

Ann Summers logo City centre sex shops claim Nottingham's Ann Summers store should be subject to licensing conditions.

There are no age restrictions on who can enter the shop in Smithy Row – which sells goods ranging from lingerie to sex toys and softcore 18 rated adult DVDs [Many high street shops sell lingerie and 18 rated DVDs. Some sell a few sex toys as well).

Yet similar stores such as The Adult Gift Shop in Goose Gate, Hockley, and The Private Shop, in Upper Parliament Street, have to apply for an expensive annual licence to trade, which includes a condition that they enforce a strict over 18 policy.

Licences are required where a significant degree of sex related articles are for sale – a term not yet defined by the courts. Each licensing authority determines its own interpretation.

Local sex stores claim Ann Summers is over what they would expect is the threshold. It comes as an Ann Summers store in Soho, London, faces private prosecution for trading without a sex establishment licence under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982. They are due to enter a plea on October 14.

Marilyn Hawkes, owner of The Adult Gift Shop said: It is a gripe among a lot of stores. There are quite a few stores across the country involved in checking Ann Summers shops in their local area. We went out to check the Nottingham one. That's when we realised that they were selling a lot more sex items than they were two to three years ago. I don't think the council realise the level of teenagers and people who go in to Ann Summers with buggies. They don't necessarily see it as a problem. They don't look at it in the same way as they do with our store. But children could pick something off the shelf that they shouldn't be exposed to.

Mrs Hawkes said Ann Summers was also allowed to have a prime city centre location next to the Council House – yet licensed stores were not allowed in that area. Mrs Hawkes added that licences cost £6,500 a year, but Ann Summers did not have this administrative burden.

A spokesman for Nottingham's The Private Shop said: It is something I have never understood because it always appeared to us that no one ever seemed to be bothered about Ann Summers (not having a licence).

A spokesman for Nottingham City Council said: There would appear not to be widespread public concern about this issue as we have received only one complaint, in January 2009, from a company claiming that Ann Summers was illegally trading as a sex shop. We have been taking a view, on a case by case basis, on whether a significant degree of sex related articles are for sale. We visited the premises earlier this year and we are satisfied that the local branch does not need a sex establishment licence.

 

18th September   

Licensed to Store...

Councils talking about sex shop licenses being required for warehouses and online sex stores
Link Here

Elmbridge Borough Council logo Warehouses stocking thousands of sex products in Elmbridge for sale on the internet, may have to high- tail it out of town after councillors promised to crack down on the practice.

Elmbridge Council in Surrey has zero tolerance for establishments trading as sex shops in the area, but at a licensing committee meeting this week, it was revealed companies based in the borough selling sex toys on the internet were also contravening council policy.

Councillors at the meeting on Monday, September 14, had gathered to discuss reviewing the policy on sex establishments in the area, but decided to defer the matter until next month, when a Police and Crime Bill dealing with the issue goes through Parliament.

But Councillor Ian Donaldson, who represents Hersham North, queried whether warehouses selling sex products online from Elmbridge addresses were breaking the law.

He said: If you go on to the internet, there are many resources available in the locality [that sell sex toys]. Are these places ‘establishments' and what would the council do about it?

Robin Barnes, the council's licensing manager, replied that these warehouses would be classed as sex establishments and would therefore need a licence from Elmbridge Council to continue trading.

He said: Even a warehouse selling by mail order is considered a shop and needs a licence.

 

14th September   

UK Sex Map...

LoveHoney launch map of UK sex shops
Link Here

UK Sex map Welcome to the UK Sex Map!

Our unique research project reveals where in the UK we spend the most on our sex lives - and what we're spending it on.

The map shows how many times the national average people in each region spend on their sex lives.

Exactly what is it that makes Upminster the sexiest town in the UK?

Spice up your sex life at LoveHoney or find a saucy shop on the map!

 

11th September   

Lovelust...

A new adult gift store for Kilmarnock
Link Here

Kilmarnock A new adult gift store Lovelust is the place that everyone in Kilmarnock has been talking about. From the moment the fetching pink sign was erected outside the West George street shop on Friday, Lovelust has been the word on everyone's lips.

Owner Claire McCormack hopes to spice up the town's shopping experience with an array of sexy gifts, toys and novelty items. But she insists Lovelust is not a sex shop: I had a think about what Kilmarnock was missing and what the town needed and realised that there isn't an adult gift store within 20 miles. People have to go to Glasgow to buy the things that we sell, but not any more. It's a bit of fun and I'm sure it will brighten things up in the town. There's nothing pornographic at all at Lovelust, there's nothing sleazy about the shop. It's very sophisticated.

Lovelust will also specialise in catering for stag and hen parties and Kilmarnock woman Claire hopes anyone with any reservations will visit the shop, which is due to open soon.

 

9th September   

A1 Adult Store...

New Pulse and Cocktails store on the A1 near Grantham
Link Here

Pulse & Cocktails near Grantham A new sexy adult superstore is now open on the A1 southbound, near Stoke Rochford, Grantham.

Formerly a McDonald's restaurant, the premises near Grantham are now a brand new and exciting adult store.

It is a bright and spacious store that offers a very relaxed shopping environment with excellent advice available from the friendly staff.

Thousands of people will drive past the Sexy Superstore every day on their travels and now many people will plan their journey so that they have plenty of time to visit the UK's most thrilling, new Sexy Superstore.

The store has 3 departments; the first has a fantastic range of sexy lingerie and dressing-up wear from sexy nurse to PVC and rubber, sexy hosiery and sexy shoes and boots.

The store also has an excellent choice of naughty novelties and games including hen and stag night products.

The second department is the most exciting one with thousands of adult sex toys, catering for all needs and tastes. A selection of the best toys are on show in display areas so that customers can see and touch before making their choices. This department also has an excellent bondage selection with restraints, whips, paddles and also handmade, life size stocks.

The third department is the separate adult film department, with over 3,000 XXX DVDs.

The store also has a huge, private car park, with plenty of room for lorries and coach parties. A visit to the new, A1 sexy adult superstore is an absolute must!

 

8th September   

Large Cause...

Ann Summers subject of a private prosecution about trading without a sex shop licence
Link Here  full story: Unfair Sex Shop Licences...Court battle over unfairly high sex shop licence charges

Ann Summers logo A previously unknown group, Large Cause Ltd (Licensed Adult Retail Group Encourage Councils Abolish Unlicensed Sex Establishments) have been successful in their application before a district judge to issue a summons against Ann Summers Ltd for trading without a sex establishment licence under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 at their Brewer Street shop in London's Soho.

Large Cause was created as a fighting platform to try and encourage local councils to adopt a uniform approach to the licensed sex shop industry, and to encourage them to enforce the 1982 act.

Ann Summers now face a criminal prosecution and have to enter their plea on the 14 October at 2pm.

The move follows a number of complaints earlier this year to local councils across the country from a number of licensed sex establishments, who contended that Ann Summers were operating unlawfully across the country.

Licences are required where a significant degree of sex related articles are for sale – a term that has not yet been definitely defined by the courts.

Complaints to local authorities alleged that the majority of products on sale and for display within the Ann Summers shops consisted of sex related articles requiring a licence – an assertion rejected by all the local authorities who inspected their local outlets. Where there was any dispute, councils reported that the chain was happy to reduce the amount of merchandise on sale to an acceptable level.

The prosecution also follows calls for councils to reduce their sex establishment licence fees. Whilst councils have a wide discretion in setting their fees providing they do not profit from doing so, these range from a few hundred pound a year to more than £30,000 a year in some areas. Licensed operators have criticised chains such as Ann Summers for being able to operate without this additional administrative and financial burden.

A representative from Large exclusively told Licensing News that the group wanted to also see the Act used against retailers trading under council's radars by not attempting to be licensed: Ann Summers are our prime concern because they are the most visible, but there are many more. Almost every UK-based sex product website trades unlicensed and every party planner should have an individual licence as their income is derived from sex articles to a significant degree. We know councils have no real interest in any of this, but they are accountable and should act .

 

6th September   

Six 30...

Adult boutique opens in Sutton Coldfield
Link Here

InShops logo A new store has opened in one of the empty units at Sutton's indoor market. It is an adult boutique selling upscale lingerie and a few toys.

The business, named Six 30 , is run by Liesa Allcock who this week told the Observer that the new venture at In Shops, South Parade, was far removed from what people may normally associate with sex shops. She said: We hope people will accept us and see that we're not as 'scary' as some may expect. I think a business like ours has become more acceptable in the past few years to a wide range of people. It's not what people typically think of, it's not like a sex shop. It's very much a place aimed at the younger woman where she can look for lingerie. At the end of the day, there are no blow up dolls – it really has a bit of class.

 

1st September   

Pillow on Hold...

East Grinstead Pillow Talk closes pending an economic upturn
Link Here

Pillow Talk logo Sex shop Pillow Talk on Railway Approach in East Grinstead closed last week, due to cut backs in the recession.

Sean Fagan, from the Pillow Talk chain, said: It's all to do with trimming down the company due to the recession. The smaller shops in the company have been carried by some of the bigger ones. We're just reducing our overheads for a bit.

Fagan, manager at the Three Bridges branch of the shop in Crawley, said the company did have plans to reopen the shop, should the economy start to look up.

 

27th August   

Offsite: Another Fine Mess...

Julian Petley on the VRA debacle
Link Here  full story: Video Recordings Act Erased...VRA was not properly enacted

Index on Censorship logo Legislate in haste, repent at leisure — that, most assuredly, is the lesson of the really quite extraordinary news that the Video Recordings Act 1984 was never referred to the European Commission, was thus never officially enacted and now cannot be enforced.

The reason why the Act should have been referred to the European Commission is because it constitutes a restraint on intra-EU trade, in that it entails that videos/DVDs which have not been certificated by the BBFC cannot legally be imported from another EU country and then sold or rented in the UK.

The DCMS has said that it has received legal advice that people who have been found guilty under the Act would be unable to overturn their convictions or seek compensation. But this is quite simply whistling in the dark.Keith Vaz is surely entirely correct in asserting that if the Act has never been brought into force, prosecutions under it are void. You cannot prosecute someone and convict them on the basis of legislation that has never been in force. If I was one of the unfortunate victims of this un-enacted Act, I would most certainly be consulting m'learned friends without further ado.

The government has made it clear that it intends to re-enact the legislation. However, rather than letting them simply rubber stamp this non-Act and proceed as if nothing has happened, would this not be the perfect opportunity to engage, finally, in a sensible debate about video regulation, a debate which was quite impossible in the over-heated and febrile atmosphere of 1984 and 1994?

...Read the full article

 

25th August   

Video Recordings Act Erased...

1984 Act governing video censorship was never properly enacted
Link Here  full story: Video Recordings Act Erased...VRA was not properly enacted

Shock Horror T he discovery of a Whitehall blunder means that the 1984 law regulating the video industry was never enacted.

The disclosure that for 25 years the Video Recordings Act governing the classification and sale of videos, video games and now DVDs was never brought into force is a big embarrassment to both Conservative and Labour governments.

It also leaves the industry in disarray with the classification system no longer officially in operation.

Police and Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs are to be told to stop bringing any prosecutions until the Government brings in emergency legislation to re-enact the 1984 Video Recordings Act. Until then people will be able to sell videos, including violent and pornographic ones, to people without fear of prosecution.

The video industry was stunned by the Government's admission that the Act was not properly enacted 25 years ago. Officials in the Home Office had failed to notify the European Commission of the existence of the Act as they were required to do so under an EU directive.

The mistake was not spotted on two subsequent occasions, in 1993 and 1994. It was finally discovered during plans to update the law and introduce a new video-game classification system.

Barbara Follett, Minister for Culture and Tourism, said last night: Unfortunately, the discovery of this omission means that, a quarter of a century later, the Video Recordings Act is no longer enforceable against individuals in United Kingdom courts. In a letter to representatives of the video industry, Follett said: As the then British Government did not notify the European Commission of the VRA's classification and labelling requirements, they cannot now be enforced against individuals in UK courts.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport said that it had received legal advice that people who had previously been prosecuted and convicted would be unable to overturn their convictions or seek compensation. [Sounds like bollox to me, how can you not fail to overturn a conviction for a law that was not enacted].

The British Video Association said that it is urging members to continue submitting work to the British Board of Film Classification and to continue labelling them under the system.

 

19th August   

Fair Sex...

Calling for a fair deal in sex shop licence fees in Cheshire
Link Here

Chester exterior A Chester sex shop argues the renewal fee for sex shop licences is too high.

A request for a lower fee of £500 was made to Cheshire West and Chester Borough Council's licensing committee by Richard Allmark and Patricia Murray of Nice n Naughty in Brook Street.

Councillors decided the renewal fee should be fixed at £2,800.

 

30th July   

Update: Charge of the Nutter Brigade Routed...

Wrexham sex shop approved despite obscure plaque
Link Here  full story: Sex Shops in Wrexham...Historic plaque claimed grounds for licence refusal

Wrexham's 2nd sex shoip was born here plaque Plans to turn the birthplace of the longest surviving member of the Charge of the Light Brigade into a sex shop have been approved.

Edwin Hughes, otherwise known as 'Balaclava Ned', was born in Wrexham and died in Blackpool in 1927 aged 96.

I think it's a pity that the premises where his plaque stands could become a sex shop
Colonel Peter Knox, Crimean War Research Society

It is thought he was born at number 2 Mount Street, where a plaque was unveiled in his honour nearly 20 years ago.

Shropshire-based company, The Fantasy House, now plans to run a sex shop from the premises, a few doors down from an existing adult shop.

The Environmental Licensing Committee granted permission on the condition none of the licensed material is positioned near the front of the shop. The committee was told there had been no objections to the application.

However earlier, Colonel Peter Knox, chairman of the Crimean War Research Society, said: I think old Ned would be spinning in his grave.

 

21st July   

Diary: Harrogate Lingerie and Swimwear...

UK trade show
Link Here

Harrogate Lingerie & Swimwear banner Harrogate Lingerie and Swimwear
Harrogate International Centre, Yorkshire, UK
16-18 August 2009

For over 25 years, Harrogate has played host to the UK's national lingerie and swimwear industry trade show.

For those just starting out in the industry right through to established buyers and retailers, a visit to the Harrogate Lingerie & Swimwear Exhibition is a must.

Retail buyers rely on Harrogate to see the latest designs, fabrics, styles and innovations from hundreds of top names and boutique suppliers.

 

3rd July   

Fifth Time Lucky...

Worthing Pillow Talk granted sex shop licence
Link Here

Pillow Talk A Worthing sex-shop has been granted a licence to sell hard-core pornography. Pillow Talk, in Rowlands Road, was granted a 12-month licence by councillors at a meeting on 1st July.

The licence was granted subject to a number of conditions, including a requirement to install CCTV cameras and a ban on any kind of window display. Instead, the shop will be fronted by covered glass.

Sixty nine letters of objection were received to the application, the fifth such bid since 2005.

Pillow Talk is run by Alan Butler who said he was very pleased with the council's decision, which came after he personally addressed the committee. I spoke myself. I say it from the heart. With 29 years experience, I don't need a lawyer to put over how I feel. It's the only way I know. This business has been my life. No-one can speak about it better than I can. I think the council made the right decision. It's the way most councils have gone around the country. It gives them control over the shop.

Butler said the shop, which is currently empty, would be refitted and refurbished in line with the committee's requirements. A second door will be installed, preventing any of the shop's interior being visible from the street even when the outer door is open, and the windows will be covered. We will be starting as soon as we can. I would think we will be open within two weeks, and we will be opening with some special offers.

 

30th June   

A Licence to Enjoy Life...

Worthing Pillow Talk set for another licence application
Link Here

Pillow Talk The new owners of the unlicensed sex shop in Rowlands Road, Worthing, are making a fresh bid for a licence.

Worthing Borough Council's licensing committee is discussing the application for Pillow Talk, which used to be called Secret Desires, on Wednesday, July 1.

As an unlicensed sex shop Pillow Talk can sell underwear, adult toys, magazines and 18 certificate DVDs and videos. It is also permitted to allow under-18s on the premises.

Campaigners have mounted letter-writing campaigns and launched a Facebook group against allowing the shop to sell restricted R18 films . These campaigners have fought off three previous licence bids and this time have sent 69 letters of objection.

In contrast there is support for the shop within the community. A Facebook group set up in favour of the sex shop has more than four times the members of the say no group.

Since it opened the licensing committee has not received a relevant complaint about the shop. Licensing inspector Simon Jones' described the shop in his report as clean, tidy and well presented inside , and did not cause him any current concern from a legal standpoint.

No objection to the plan has been raised by Sussex Police, West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, Worthing Borough Council's environmental health, planning services and community safety departments.

The committee meeting in Worthing Town Hall at 6pm is open to the public.

 

13th June   

Charge of the Nutter Brigade...

Whinges about sex shop in building with an obscure plaque
Link Here  full story: Sex Shops in Wrexham...Historic plaque claimed grounds for licence refusal

Wrexham's 2nd sex shoip was born here plaque A company wants to open a sex shop in a Wrexham town centre property famous for being the birthplace of the oldest surviving member of the Charge of the Light Brigade.

Edwin Hughes - who became known as Balaclava Ned after riding with the 13th Light Dragoons in the suicidal charge during the Crimean War - was born at number 2 Mount Street in 1830.

In 1992 local businessman Bob Gray paid for a commemorative plaque to be fixed to the side of the building, which is now unoccupied.

The National Chairman of the Crimean War Research Society Col Peter Knox who lives in the Mold area said: I'm horrified, but what can one do, all our members will be horrified too. We will certainly be lodging a complaint with the planning authority in Wrexham. The idea of opening a sex shop in such a significant birthplace is a slur on the memory of the man and the campaign. Balaclava Ned would be spinning in his grave, It's totally unacceptable.

Fantasy House is applying to Wrexham Council for a licence to turn the premises into a shop selling adult clothing. The application is due to come before the environmental licensing committee on July 27.

When the scheme was considered by the town centre's Offa Community Council recently, councillors raised objections to the possibility of a second adult shop being sited so close to an Private Shop just further along Yorke Street. Some nutters thought such premises should not be sited so close to the Wrexham Parish Church.

 

1st June   

Hubble Bubble Toil and Trouble...

Shakespearean nutters whinge at sex shop in Stratford
Link Here

Macbeth Witches An adult boutique is due to open on Friday in Stratford  upon Avon.

Predictably this is much to the annoyance of the mayor who claims it could damage the image of William Shakespeare's home town.

Romeo and Juliet's Adult Boutique is due to open at 20 Rother Street in the town centre after it was given planning permission.

Mayor Jenny Fradgley said: It can't be good for the image Stratford is trying to promote for itself. Fradgley feels the shop could lower the tone and was not in line with the World Class Stratford initiative which aimed to transform the town. She added it was also near a bus stop used by schoolchildren.

But the shop owner Katie Gilbert said the Bard's plays had many sexual references and he would be proud. Shop owner Katie Gilbert said it would be fun and tasteful

The shop will be unlicensed and will sell lingerie, toys and softcore 18 rated DVDs.

 

27th April   

Update: Triangulation...

Two new sex shops for Bournemouth's Triangle
Link Here  full story: Sex Shops in Bornemouth...Plenty of sex shops in Bournemouth

Private Shops banner Councillors have granted licences for two new sex shops at the Triangle.

Councillors on Bournemouth’s licensing committee insisted there were no grounds to refuse the two sex shop applications, which will take the total in the area to four.

White Tiger Europe Ltd was granted a sex establishment licence for 12 months for Triangle Adult Store , a lifestyle shop for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender customers, run by the former manager of Clone Zone.

Despite nutter objections from traders, Darker Enterprises has been given permission to take over the licence formerly held by the Clone Zone, which went into administration in January. It plans a new store called Private Shop .

Appealing to the licensing committee to reject the Darker Enterprises' application, former mayor Cllr Bob Chapman said: It’s flying in the face of everything this council is trying to do, at considerable cost to the taxpayers of this town and will do nothing to lift the appearance of the Triangle area.

Jason Appleby, manager of The All New Chez L’amour in the Triangle, said most of his customers were middle-aged, buying items similar to those from Ann Summers. Neither needs a sex shop licence as the percentage of “sex articles” it sells is low: I’m not sure what they think is going to happen if two more shops are here. Most people don’t notice this shop when they walk past.

 

26th April   

Sexy Since the 30's...

Oldest sex shop in the UK up for sale
Link Here  full story: Oldest UK Sex Shop...Gwenap in Hull struggling to find a buyer

Gwenap Gwenap adult store in Princes Avenue, west Hull, is instantly recognisable with its black and white facade and cheeky messages.

In fact, the cherished shop was one of the first in the country to sell sexy underwear when it opened in the 1930s.

But after running the store for more than 20 years, owner Jim Starkey has decided to call it a day and is looking for someone with fresh ideas to takeover.

Ideally, he wants it to remain an adult store.
Starkey said: I have had the shop for 22 years and took it on as a bit of a hobby. I would like someone to take over who can do something a little bit different.

For a long while, the store just sold sexy underwear but, about 10 years ago, Starkey introduced sex toys.

He said: I believe this is the oldest sex shop in the country. It started selling sexy underwear in the 1930s. You could say it was pioneering.

Update: Still Up for Sale

27th June 2009. See article from thisishullandeastriding.co.uk

Jim Starkey said: We've had several people interested in taking over the business and one couple were very interested in carrying it on but they couldn't get the money together.

If a buyer can't be found soon, Gwenap may have to close. What we will probably do is use the name for a website but that's not ideal. The idea of this has upset many local people who regard it as part of the establishment.

Our last lifeline is to find an investor who would like to take Gwenap and capitalise on its long history by taking it into the 'boutique sexy shop' market and possibly invest in a chain of shops under the Gwenap name.

 

14th April   

More Private Shop Clones...

Private Shops apply for the Clone Zone licence in Bournemouth
Link Here  full story: Sex Shops in Bornemouth...Plenty of sex shops in Bournemouth

Private Shops banner Nutters fear a Bournemouth sex shop is about to be taken over by an operator who presents what they claim is a more seedy image.

Essex-based sex shop company Darker Enterprises (Private Shops) has applied for permission to operate the old Clone Zone store in the Triangle.

But their bid to transfer the current sex shop licence has sparked around 40 objections. These claim that the Darker Enterprises’ store will be completely different from the existing business and will hinder the regeneration of the Triangle area.

One letter to the council states: The way Darker Enterprises present their shops is seedy and this would be detrimental to trade in this area. Clone Zone was a lifestyle store (which had many high street retail elements rather than just sex) for the gay community and the licence was granted in the Triangle for this. There are already licensed stores on Holdenhurst Road catering for the straight market and there is no need for additional ones in this area.

A local trader said: While the current shop has a sex licence it looks like an ‘extreme’ men’s underwear shop. The new operator uses blacked- out shop fronts which are blatantly obvious to all as being a sex shop and will attract the unsavoury shoppers who I have no need to describe. [A bit unfair considering it's usually councils that insist on blacked out window displays]

The council’s licensing board will consider the application on Thursday, April 16.

 

14th April   

Nua Shop...

Nua opens an erotic boutique in Sheffield
Link Here

Nua logo A Sheffield couple have opened a sex shop on busy, trendy Ecclesall Road. But Graham and Janine Barrass prefer to call their new business an erotic boutique not a sex shop.

And you just might miss Nua because it doesn't look like you think a sex shop does: We want to get away from the blacked-out, seedy image. Shopping for adult toys has come a long way.

Indeed, the shop window could be a boutique, with nothing to frighten the horses in the window – just a blindfold, handcuffs and Bride to Be top hat. Although parents might have a little work to do explaining the spanking paddle to inquisitive children.

Staying in is the new going out. With more people entertaining themselves at home these days sales of lingerie are soaring, says Janine. Nua doesn't sell lingerie yet but it sells a lot of things that could go with it if you've a mind. There are massage oils and creams, games with names such Fetish! and Seven Deadly Sins, and all manner of curiously-shaped objects which buzz. Batteries are included at Nua.

The business, a franchise, was started by Janine's sister in Manchester and they've sold their stuff at last year's Erotica fair at Olympia and Gay Pride in Manchester. In fact, they've got something for everyone, no matter which way you swing.

So far, no one's complained. Graham says: The first week we had quite a bit of interest. Some people were intrigued and some were obviously coming in to see what we were all about.

 

13th April   

Morality Licence...

Jumped up sex shop licence fee in Dagenham
Link Here

Emmanuel Obasohan A sex shop boss has blasted a clampdown stopping him playing pornographic videos inside his store.

B C Books manager Bradley Rose also hit out against the sex industry crackdown banning him from using neon signs, calling his Dagenham premises a sex shop and forcing him to use double doors.

The conditions, on top of an annual trading charge of nearly £20,000, compared to £1,000 in parts of Essex, were imposed last week, following a complaint from Barking and Dagenham Mayor Cllr Emmanuel Obasohan. The Southwark pastor with the Church of God Mission International asked that the shop in Bennetts Castle Lane be stripped of its licence.

Rose said: £20,000 is a lot a year to find. It's ridiculous. If any consenting adult is coming into a sex shop, they're not going to be offended. They've entered an establishment for the purpose of buying adult material. You're not coming into a sex shop to buy a pack of sweets, are you?

Mr Rose has previously disputed his trading charge increase from £12,300 last year to £19,000, saying he paid just £1,000 for his sex shop in Thurrock, Essex.

Barking and Dagenham Council claimed the revised charge was imposed in order not to penalise taxpayers.

Cllr Evelyn Carpenter had also raised objections to the licence renewal. She said: I'm concerned about a sex shop in a busy shopping area with children nearby. She also pointed to the council's new Sex Establishment Policy which states that it is not appropriate to locate a sex shop in residential and shopping areas, where children and young people may have reasonable access.

The board decided to grant the renewal as there had been no complaints by residents since B.C. Books began trading in 2003. Spot checks in the past six months showed that licence conditions were being adhered to and no crimes were recorded in connection with the shop.

 

9th April   

Naughty 'n' Pink...

Nice 'n' Naughty to distribute Pink Visual R18 DVDs
Link Here

Nice 'n' Naughty Nice ‘n’ Naughty Wholesale has announced that it has acquired exclusive UK distribution rights for the Pink Visual range of R18 DVDs. 13 titles will be launched initially, in distinctive pink cases, including the popular Couples Seduce Teens series.

At the signing of the exclusivity agreement, Plaid Bay Media’s Peter Reynolds, acting on behalf of Pink Visual, commented: We checked out a number of possible partners before settling on Nice ‘n’ Naughty. In the end, we were convinced by the quality of Nice ‘n’ Naughty’s presentation and their proven track record of success. We feel very confident about the future.’

Nice ‘n‘ Naughty Director Simon Prescott added: We’re really excited about working with Plaid Bag and Pink Visual to build a strong franchise in the UK. Pink Visual is a high quality product and their extensive range opens up a lot of new opportunities not covered by our existing portfolio. He added that Pink Visual titles represent exceptional value for money as each DVD includes five scenes and has a run time of two hours and 50 minutes.

 

3rd April   

Nutter Challenge UK...

Chastity group whinge at non-retail mail order warehouse
Link Here

Melton Council A warehouse stocking X-rated material is likely to get the green light from Melton Council on Thursday despite some nutter opposition.

Several letters have been written calling on council officers to ban the opening of the storage building in Kings Road industrial estate, which needs a sex shop establishment licence.

Business partners Paul Noble and Dan Cruickshank insist it will not be open to the public or have visible evidence of the contents but several people have opposed it on moral grounds.

A nutter group called Challenge Team UK, which promotes saving sex until marriage, wrote to the council. It says: It would be extremely irresponsible to issue a licence for a sex shop in the town, even if at present the intention is solely for a warehouse. Every responsible citizen should be working to create a climate which discourages casual and promiscuous sex.

The application for the business states it will trade as a warehouse from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday with three members of staff including the two business partners.

A report by licensing officers says: This application is for a warehouse to store the articles to be sold by mail order and internet. There will be no callers at the premises to collect goods and this licence will not cover the retail sale directly from these premises.

Update: Licence Granted

14th April 2009. See article from meltontimes.co.uk

Melton Council's licensing committee approved a sex shop establishment licence for the storage building in Kings Road.

 

18th March   

Updated: Nursing Intolerance...

Port Talbot nutters whinge at sex nurses uniforms in window display
Link Here

Neath Port Talbot CouncilNutters and nurses in Port Talbot have been getting all hot and bothered about a saucy shop window display.

They are said to have been offended by the display, which included nurse uniforms, at the town's only sex shop.

Secret Desires has its licence up for renewal and councillors will meet to decide whether to renew it, change it or even throw it out.

But Taibach's two ward councillors say they have had numerous complaints from residents about a raunchy window display at the Commercial Road shop.

John Rogers and Anthony Taylor said: They (the residents) believe some of the items that have been featured have been of an offensive nature and unsuitable for passers-by on a main road. Of particular concern was a display that included nurse uniforms, which generated complaints from local nurses who felt they were being subjected to an unfair and degrading image of their profession.

They point out the original licence holders had no intention of having any window displays but, since a new owner took over, that was no longer the case. They want a condition to reflect the concerns of the local community consisting only of a blanked-out background in the window.

Council legal chief David Michael said Secret Desires had been subjected to two unannounced visits by officers over the past 12 months and was found to be in compliance with the terms of its licence.

The committee should take into account the fact that no objections have been received from the police, but equally will need to consider the basis of the objections from the ward councillors, said Michael.

Update: Licence Renewed

18th March 2009

A sex shop has been given the all clear by councillors despite incurring the wrath of angry nurses. A few nurses in Port Talbot were said to be up in arms last September when a shop window displaying nurse uniforms appeared at Taibach's Secret Desires.

Now the long running row has reached its conclusion after the shop's licence was renewed this week, despite nutter protest.

Addressing the panel of councillors, Simon Sternschuss, the owner of Port Talbot's only sex shop said: My window display is no more offensive than any fancy dress shop up and down the country.

 

17th March   

Warwick Council Discuss Fees...

Sex shop licence fee is not a morality tax
Link Here

Warwick Council logoPrivate in High Street, Old Told, Leamington Spa, has been the subject of a trading standards investigation and has been visited by licensing officers on several occasions.

Warwick district councillor Roger Copping protested at the authority's meeting last week about the minimal price it will pay for a permit .

Calling the shop illegal and unlicensed, Copping (Not So Lib Dem) asked for the £2,000 fee to be raised to £3,500 to take into account the cost of officers' time.

He said: There has been a great deal of work in this officer's job, even though nobody has paid the minimalistic sum at this moment.

Council leader Coun Michael Doody warned that setting a high price might presuppose there would be problems when most applications were straightforward.

Coun Michael Kinson (Con), who is responsible for licensing policy, explained that officers and legal advisors had recommended the £2,000 fee as a fair price for the licensing procedure: It is not a tax on morals.

Chief financial officer Mary Hawkins explained that that council officers did not feel a higher fee would be defensible if anyone applying for a license appealed.

 

16th March   

An A1 Pulse...

A new Pulse and Cocktails shop on the A1 south of Grantham
Link Here

Pulse & Cocktails logo A new sex shop is to open in the former McDonald's restaurant on the southbound carriageway of the A1 south of Grantham near Stoke Rochford.

Yorkshire company Pulse and Cocktails - which already has a store in London Road, Grantham - plans to convert the redundant building into a new store with up to five full-time staff.

The company has applied to South Kesteven District Council for a licence for the new store.

Director Clair Boothby said: Our stores offer a welcoming and female friendly environment for couples to shop together.

The location is perfect as it is identical to a number of our other stores on main roads and at out of town retail parks. Our store in Grantham town centre, as with many High Street stores, is ideal for customers travelling by bus or on foot.

This new location is on a main road and has its own car park, which is ideal for customers who wish to visit the store by car.


The refurbishment of the building is expected to start in the next few weeks, but no opening date for the store has yet been set.

 

13th March   

Mean Minded Prayers...

Private Lives in Gosport shuts after failing to get licence
Link Here

Private LivesA sex shop selling pornographic magazines and sex toys near has shut. Private Lives in Forton Road, Gosport has now closed, with bosses blaming Gosport Borough Council for turning down their application for a sex shop licence.

Business director Chris Blake said the licence – which would have allowed them to sell explicit DVDs – was one of the main reasons it shut.

It is a shame because we weren't hurting or harming anyone and we were abiding by the law, but we were just hung out to dry by the councillors who turned down our application for the licence, he said.

Local nutters had objected to the shop, with complaints to the council about its erotic window display. Up to 30 churchgoing nutters even spent a day praying a sex shop licence would not be granted, and a handful of residents cheered when the council's licensing board kicked out the application.

Deputy leader of the council, Cllr Peter Chegwyn, said people would be pleased that the shop had closed its doors: I think many people will be glad that it has closed, in particular churchgoers and parents who had to walk their children past on their way to school. The council is trying to clean up that area and I'm sure this closure will help do that, because it had some quite garish window displays.

The shop closed its doors last month after being open for almost three years.

 

7th March   

ETO Show 2009...

UK trade only adult show and awards
Link Here

Agent Provocateur adTwo ads in the Sunday Telegraph magazine supplement 'Stella' promoted an evening shopping event at Agent Provocateur.

Ad (a) showed women in lingerie draped over a banqueting table. In the centre of the table was a woman with a snake around her neck. Next to her was a topless woman wearing a blindfold with a rope around her neck. The snake's head was on her chest. One of the women held a dead pheasant, another woman crawled on all fours and ate apples spilling from a basket. On the floor next to her a five-pointed star had been painted in white. Two male figures in hooded robes stood on either side of the room.

Ad (b) showed women in lingerie and men in old fashioned naval uniforms in a pirate ship setting. One woman sat on a drum with a gag in her mouth and her hands tied behind her back. A short man in a tricorn hat held two drum sticks up beside her. Other women crawled on the floor, fought with swords, drank or played the accordion. To the right of the picture was a man with a noose around his neck.

1. Two complainants challenged whether the ads were offensive and demeaning to women because of their explicit content, particularly because of the images of bondage and the man with a noose around his neck in ad (b).

2. One complainant challenged whether the ads were irresponsible, because they were unsuitable for publication in a national newspaper supplement where they might be seen by children.

ASA Assessment

1. Not upheld

Although we noted the ads contained images that some readers may find distasteful, we considered the stylised nature of the ads and the clearly fictional context meant they were unlikely to be interpreted by most readers in the way the complainants suggested. Although distasteful to some, we considered the ads did not demean women and were unlikely to cause widespread offence to the readers of Stella magazine.

2. Not upheld

We noted that Stella magazine was a supplement in the Sunday Telegraph and the style and editorial content of that magazine were clearly aimed at adults. We therefore considered it was unlikely to appeal to children and concluded the ads were suitable to appear in the publication.

No further action necessary.

 

20th February   

Unsensational...

Nutter petition comes to nowt in Chorley
Link Here

Sensations shopBolton councillors considered a 180 name nutter petition  before renewing the licence of a Chorley sex shop.

The owners of M & M Sensations, which has operated from premises on Bolton Street since 2001, applied to renew their sex establishment licence last week.

The petition claimed that the location of M & M Sensations was inappropriate and a covering letter said: We do not believe, as many in the community, that such a business should be sited just nine shops form a lollipop crossing.

Councillors from the council's general licensing sub-committee granted the renewal. A spokesman for Chorley Council said: The shop has been in this area since 2001 and there have been no issues for the council, the police or trading standards in that time.

A petition was received highlighting the proximity to a primary school, but was undermined by the fact that we wrote to all 180 people who had signed it and received back only six responses. Two of those were returned because the person was 'unknown' at the given address, one wanted their name to be removed claiming they had been misinformed about the petition and another said they'd only signed because they thought it was campaigning to get the shop removed completely.

The licensing sub-committee heard from the owner and used Chorley's guidelines on sex establishment to consider the application and found no grounds to refuse it.

 

18th February   

Update: Naughty Cloned...

Clonezone in Brighton has become Nice 'n' Naughty
Link Here  full story: Clonezone...Clonezone put into administration

Nice 'n' Naughty sex shop icon I visited what used to be Clonezone on St James' Street, Brighton and it is now Nice 'n' Naughty.

I was greeted by a really nice girl (think she was the naughty one LOL). Something that was a surprise in the shop, as normally when I nip in to a gay store, you normally get ignored by the staff!

It had some really nice bits, and seemed to cater for us gay boys and girls really well. I ended up getting a couple of dvds on a multi buy offer, and to my surprise was actually given some customer service!

They had a suggestion box on the counter, and the boy and girl there were really sweet and helpful.

So going to wish the new guys n gals there a lot of luck for the future, nice to see a shop that looks after its customers and willing to get them what they want in a shop.

 

7th February   

Lost Desires...

Pillow Talk take over Bognor sex shop
Link Here

Pillow Talk logoA new owner has taken over the sex shop in Bognor Regis.

Pillow Talk re-opened the hardcore outlet, formerly Secret Desires, in Lyon Street West at the end of last month.

The company has bought the shop – along with the one in Worthing – from its former operator Sleeptonight to make a 16-strong chain across Sussex, Surrey and Kent.

In a newspaper interview, Pillow Talk general manager Tony Gonzalez said the aim was to make the branches more female friendly than they had been. Pillow Talk was not intended to be a traditional back-street sex shop. We are more like Ann Summers with a range of adult DVDs as well. We are the type of shop aimed towards couples and more female-friendly, rather than a traditional adult shop.

The licence was granted in April 2006. It permits the shop to open between 9am and 8pm Mondays to Saturdays and noon to 6pm on Sundays.

 

1st February   

Update: Talking Licence...

New Pillow Talk in Worthing to apply for sex shop licence
Link Here

Pillow Talk logoThe new owners of a Worthing sex shop will continue a four-year fight to sell hard core pornography.

Pillow Talk is expected to open in early February in Rowlands Road – in the former Secret Desires shop – and the owners have confirmed they will apply to Worthing Council to become a licensed sex shop.

The shop's former owners, Shoptonight, failed in three bids to become licensed, which would allow the sale of hard core pornography but also impose stringent restrictions on access to the shop.

Tony Gonzalez, general manager of Pillow Talk 's 16 shops across Sussex, Surrey and Kent, said his company had bought the Worthing and Bognor shops from Shoptonight and would be more female-friendly.

He acknowledged the role of self-styled morality campaigner Steve Stevens in campaigns against the previous shop but said Pillow Talk would not be a traditional back-street sex shop. We are more like Ann Summers with a range of adult DVDs as we are the type of shop aimed towards couples and more female-friendly, rather than a traditional adult shop. This shop, to begin with, is going to be carrying mostly lingerie and toys as it's an unlicensed shop.

Gonzalez said the shop window would feature displays of lingerie until the licence was granted, something he was confident would happen.

Alan Butler, managing director of Pillow Talk , said he hoped to submit the licence application to the council within the next two weeks.

 

31st January   

Update: Uncloned...

Clonezone brand continues from four stores
Link Here

Clone Zone Ltd has averted a financial crisis and has now been purchased by novelty manufacturer Libertybelle U.K. Ltd.

It will continue operations from four of its 10 brick-and-mortar outlets in Birmingham, London and Manchester.

The Clonezone sale includes the Clone Zone brand, stock and Internet retail business, according to a published report. The remaining retail locations will be sold. Five stores have already been sold to Nice 'n' Naughty and will operate under Nice 'n' Naughty branding.

The business, as it was structured, found it hard to maintain market share when faced with growing competition on the Internet, said Asher Miller of David Rubin & Partners, a London-based insolvency firm appointed to the case. With this restructuring and renewed investment, coupled with a new focus on Internet retail, the Clone Zone business will have the best chance of survival.

We are delighted that we have been able to secure the future of Clone Zone with a partner from within the industry that brings a tremendous amount of expertise in sales, marketing, [novelty] design and manufacturing, said Mike McCann, the company's newly appointed managing director.

 

29th January   

Update: Clonezone Goes Naughty...

Nice ‘n’ Naughty goes national by acquiring 5 new stores
Link Here  full story: Clonezone...Clonezone put into administration

Nice 'n' Naughty sex shop icon Nice ‘n’ Naughty, the award winning UK adult shop chain has today announced the acquisition of a further 5 stores. This will increase the number of Nice ‘n’ Naughty stores from 11 to 16 and extend coverage nationwide, with branches in England, Scotland & Wales.

The new stores are located in Brighton, Bristol, Leeds, Newcastle and Glasgow and previously formed part of the Clonezone chain which has recently gone into administration. Nice ‘n’ Naughty takes over the stores on the 1st of February. All 5 will then be refitted, restocked and reopened within 8 weeks in order to minimize the interruption of service to customers whilst the rebranding to Nice ‘n’ Naughty takes place.

Philip Price, currently Nice ‘n’ Naughty’s Regional Manager for Lancashire and West Cheshire, will become Area Manager for the 5 new stores. Philip, a former manager with Clonezone, has over 7 years’ experience within the gay retail market plus 3 years with Nice ‘n’ Naughty. He plans to use this invaluable expertise within the gay sector, as well as his passion for the retail industry, to ensure that the 5 new stores cater for everybody. As well as ensuring existing customers find what they’re looking for, new product lines will also be introduced to attract a wider customer base to experience Nice ‘n’ Naughty’s distinctive retail approach.

CloneZone logoPhilip, a well known personality in Manchester, is also committed to supporting local businesses and charities within each area. Phillip commented, Since moving to Manchester 11 years ago, I have been actively involved on a personal level to help raise funds for local charities and organisations such as the LGF and George House Trust. Nice ‘n’ Naughty has also sponsored numerous events in the community, helping to raise funds and awareness, which is something we are passionate about continuing. The support that was given locally by Clonezone prior to their closure will continue through Nice ‘n’ Naughty. In fact, we have already been contacted to sponsor the 4th Annual Camp Awards in Newcastle, which we will be happy to do.

Simon Prescott, Director of Nice ‘n’ Naughty, continued, We have every intention to pick up where Clonezone left off, and will support the local communities 110% in the 5 cities and towns.

Nice ‘n’ Naughty has achieved Investors In People status and won many awards for excellence including ETO Best Adult retailer for 4 consecutive years and Best Retail Chain in Europe 2008 at the eLine Adult Awards. Nice ‘n’ Naughty’s stores cater for people of all sexual orientations: straight/gay/lesbian/bisexual/TV/TS. Knowledgeable, well trained staff are always on hand to offer customers help and advice.

 

27th January   

Morality Walk...

Rochdale bollox about shopping street not being a good place for a shop
Link Here

Rochdale Council logoAn application for a sex shop licence for a shop on The Walk in Rochdale Town Centre has been turned down by Councillors on the Regulatory Committee.

Councillors said that while they were not averse to having this type of business in the town ...BUT... all agreed that The Walk was a poor choice of location for a sex shop.

Councillor Irene Davidson said: I would refuse the licence because this is a unique part of Rochdale Town Centre and a major part of the future redevelopment. If it was anywhere else I would seriously look at the possibility. The Walk is just not the place for a business like this.

Chairman of the Regulatory Committee Ashley Dearnley said: I have no problem with the idea but this is a main route into the town centre and it is very narrow so people would not be able to walk easily past if they were offended by such an establishment.

The applicant for the licence, Emma Bannister, from Bury, insisted that no offensive items would be put in the shop window and that the establishment would be secure, with no minors allowed to enter the premises. Until recently the premises had been a sex shop, before it was forced to close down for financial reasons but councillors countered that if they had been the ones that decided the licence originally they would not have granted it.

The Council had received three letters of objection to the proposed sex shop from members of the public who feared that the shop would be offensive to town centre visitors.

 

25th January   

Update: Pillow Fight...

Worthing nutter continues fight as Secret Desires gives way to Pillow Talk
Link Here

Pillow Talk logoVeteran nutter Steve Stevens is claiming victory after a Worthing sex shop closed.

But he faces a new fight because adult goods chain Pillow Talk plans to take over the vacant shop next week.

Secret Desires in Rowlands Road, Worthing, was cleared of stock just weeks before councillors were due to hear a fourth try for a sex shop licence.

Stevens said of the new shop: I will campaign against it of course. I think they would be very ill-advised to try to do anything in this town.

Tony Gonzalez, of Pillow Talk, said: Hopefully we should be up and running by the middle of next week.

 

24th January   

Update: Not So Holy...

Holyhead approves first adult shop
Link Here  full story: Sex Shops in Holyhead...Holyhead sex shop applications winds up local nutters

HolyheadNutters in Holyhead are fuming after councillors gave the go-ahead for a sex shop.

At a licensing meeting, seven councillors voted in favour of the adults only outlet.

The proprietor David McCullum applied to the council in 2007 to open the shop near the town centre in William Street.

Nutter traders next to the proposed site had organised a petition against it but councillor Richard L Owen from Beaumaris said there were no grounds
to refuse a licence for the shop: It was just a straight forward licensing committee and If we had refused it it would have gone before a magistrate. There's no grounds to refuse it, the only thing that we were able to do is give him the amount of hours that he can open. We have to try and be fair with people. It was quite unanimous and all the councillors were very specific that there was no legality issues and we could not refuse it.

McCullum is believed to be modelling the shop which will be allowed to open between 5pm and 10pm in the more up-market tradition used by the Ann Summers chain.

The council also imposed a bi-lingual signs clause, which could translate his Good Vibrations shop name to Dirgryniadau Da.

Hugh Gray Morris opposite the new shop and raised a petition against the new establishment: I think they are allowed to open from 5pm but all our receptionists who have children feel uncomfortable and are worried about the undesirables . To be fair he has built the front of the shop quite well but it's what goes inside that concerns us.

 

20th January   

Mental Tiddlers...

Nutter Tidworth councillors claim small vague drawing is a traffic hazard
Link Here

Fun & FantasyRear-view drawings of women are offensive and could lead to road accidents, according to ludicrous claims by a Wiltshire council which has banned their display in Tidworth.

Chris Thomas, who owns the Fun and Fantasy business in Tidworth, Wiltshire, has met officials from Kennet District Council’s environmental health and licensing departments.

They said the eight-inch high ladies had to go or he would lose his licence to trade.

Chris is bemused by the ruling and says he has not received any complaints from the public and cannot believe that the drawings are a traffic hazard.

However, in a letter the district council said it had been in contact with the county highways department who confirmed the bollox that the sign would be a distraction to motorists on an approach to a junction by virtue of its unusualness in the public realm. It would, claimed the council, lead to motorists’ attention being taken away from the road at a critical point in the network.

But Chris said: If any motorist has an accident because of these signs it is because they aren’t driving with due care and attention. What are they going to ban next? Motorists can be distracted by a display in a shop window or a girl in a mini-skirt – are they going to ban them?

 

19th January   

Clone Zone Credit Crunched...

Gay retail chain goes into receivership
Link Here  full story: Clonezone...Clonezone put into administration

Clone ZoneClonezone, UK's prominent gay adult retail and distribution chain, has gone into court receivership, according to a newspaper report that cited the company’s insurmountable financial difficulty. Clonezone operates 10 brick-and-mortar locations around England, as well as a distribution business, retail website and mail order catalog.

After the recent hemorrhaging of money that the high street has seen with casualties including British staples Woolworths and MFI [furniture outlets] going bust it was only a matter of time before more niche and specialist retailers such as Clonezone were also hit, Pink News said.

Clonezone, which will continue operations without being liquidated, has been a highly visible member of the European gay adult entertainment community for more than 25 years.

 

12th January   

Blown Out of All Proportion...

Ann Summers sale advert amuses Watford
Link Here

Ann SUmmers advertAdult retailer Ann Summers has apologised for offending a shopper with one of its saucy shop fronts. But it did not say it would remove the window display’s suggestive sale sign despite a letter from the council asking them to tone it down.

Harrow council wrote to the sex toy and lingerie chain over the sign in which an elongated letter ‘l’ in 'sale' is depicted in an apparent sex act below the catchline get excited.
Ann Summers

Kevin Gooch was shocked to be confronted by the image when he was out shopping with his young son in the Harlequin shopping centre in Watford. In a letter to the Harrow Times, which prompted the council to take action, he said: I was surprised and somewhat shocked to see Ann Summers displaying a pair of open lips with a five foot erect penis just about to enter into them. I feel this sends out a very strong message. I do not want my young children to be subjected to this kind of subliminal messaging when going shopping.

Harrow council’s deputy leader Susan Hall wrote to retail boss Jacqueline Gold to ask her to consider changing the display. The lips image is an obviously suggestive one, and not even Mary Poppins would think it doesn’t refer to a sex act.

An Ann Summers spokeswoman said it had not yet received the council’s letter but the sale signs had been used for the past three and a half years.

She said: We aim to have fun in what we do without offending. However, we do take our role seriously and apologise if we have offended the customer in question and what he has interpreted from our window.

 

12th January   

Offsite: Ann Summers Party Plan...

Riding out the credit crunch
Link Here

Ann Summers logoAnn Summers' chief executive Jacqueline Gold has ambitious growth plans for 2009.

Using her Midas touch, Gold is continuing to expand her business despite the gloom of the current financial climate. New stores have opened in Barnstable, Bolton, Wigan and Stockport, and an Eastbourne branch opens this month.

This is the beginning of a new era for the brand, she says. The credit crunch is having an impact on everybody, but it’s actually had the reverse effect on our Ann Summers Party Plan. In difficult times our Party Plans sell extremely well, even in the shops. Our products are a relatively small cost and it’s a great way of cheering yourself up when times are bad.

...Read full article

 

9th January   

Conservation Abuse...

Hardly conservation to change the character of a street of charity shops, adult stores and ethnic supermarkets
Link Here

Shauna'sCapel Street is Dublin's latest area to become an Architectural Conservation Area (ACA), designed to bring to an end its signage and visible sex-shop frontage.

Councillor Emer Costello says the move will bring improvements to the area. However, she expressed her concern at the fact that no owners were notified by letter about the ACA by the Dublin City Council.

Under the conservation order, owners will need planning permission if they are to change their advertising signs.

The practice of advertising that turns shop fronts into bill boards is not desirable, it is stated within the ACA report. The report says banner-type signs and advertising sheeting covering any part of the front facade of a building in the street are not acceptable. It adds: Careful consideration should be given to the colours used on any advertising structures or signs. Substantial areas of inappropriate garish colours shall not be allowed as the background of any sign.

Many locals have welcomed the move as it will enforce tighter planning controls on shop owners along the street, which is lined with charity shops, adult stores and ethnic supermarkets.

 



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