Edinburgh first to approve plans to licence strip clubs

The local authority will introduce a dedicated licensing regime for sexual entertainment venues.

Edinburgh: The council is moving forward with plans to licence strip clubs. <strong>Pixabay</strong>
Edinburgh: The council is moving forward with plans to licence strip clubs. Pixabay

The City of Edinburgh Council has become the first local authority in Scotland to approve plans to licence strip clubs.

New legislation gives councillors discretionary powers to impose tighter regulations and set a limit on the volume of sexual entertainment venues (SEVs).

Performers who work in the city’s four lap dancing bars will be invited to speak to the council to help shape the policy.

There were around 800 responses to a public consultation on the issue; the vast majority of comments were submitted by local residents.

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Around two thirds (65%) supported the idea of a new licensing policy.

Councillors say they believe the move will encourage more robust health and safety policies, and protect workers against human trafficking.

The next step will involve holding evidence sessions with affected businesses and community groups, to help inform the final policy.

Workers from the four clubs will also be invited to give evidence in a closed session.

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Councillor Catherine Fullerton, convener of the council’s regulatory committee, said the aim was to “safeguard public safety and prevent crime and disorder”.

She added: “Thanks to all those who took part in the initial consultation to share their views.

“Committee agreed that it will take detailed evidence from community groups, businesses affected and statutory bodies as it develops the necessary licensing policy to implement a licensing system.

“There will be a further public consultation early next year on the final proposed scheme.”


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