Lap dancing club plan is to be considered
- Credit: Nick Butcher
Fresh plans to open the first lap dancing and pole dancing club in Lowestoft are set to be considered by Waveney District Council's licensing committee today.
Business owners, church leaders and local residents are among hundreds of people to object to the proposal to open Jessy Fantail in the former Bank Stores pub in Commercial Road.
Applicants Hazel Wilson and Stephen Barrett were given the go-ahead to open the Candy Lounge Gentleman's Club in Station Square in February and say they will surrender that licence if they receive approval for Jessy Fantail.
However, opponents of the plan say it is inappropriate in an area occupied by families and near to family-friendly businesses, such as the Madeira Bar and Grill and the 99p shop.
They also argue it is contrary to a policy set by Waveney in 2011, which states no sexual entertainment venues are allowed in Lowestoft.
In a written objection to the latest plans, Christine Tyacke, of Market Lane, Blundeston, quotes from the minutes of the 2011 policy setting meeting.
She said: 'I quote from the minutes of the meeting: 'Council felt that it was a good piece of legislation that would help to ensure that Lowestoft would keep its reputation as a respectable family, seaside resort. The adoption of the policy was considered to be important especially in terms of child protection.''
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Waveney leader Colin Law has also expressed opposition to Jessy Fantail, saying: 'There is no place for it in Lowestoft.'
Among the business owners to object is Brandon Taylor, chairman of Taylor Properties, which has an office immediately adjacent to the former Bank Stores.
He said the building was in a conservation area and occupied a prominent position at the entrance to the town, making it one of the first buildings people saw as they crossed from south to north over the Bascule bridge.
He said the blacked-out windows would be detrimental to the appearance of the conservation area and create a bad impression for visitors to the town.
Beresford Road Evangelical Church has also submitted opposition to the venue with Christ Church Lowestoft and Lowestoft Town Pastors including petitions in their responses.
One letter in support of the plan was also received during the public consultation.
The licence is for the granting of a sex establishment licence for a sexual entertainment venue.