Adult entertainment, Licensing, Dance, Burlesque, Sex, Camden

A few years ago I did research on how sex-licensing works in Westminster, the London borough where Soho, Mayfair and Shepherd’s Market are located. The Licensing Act of 2003 (which applies only to England and Wales) streamlined several different licensing schemes into one, authorising local governments to grant a single premises licence to sell alcohol and provide forms of regulated entertainment. The four basic objectives to be taken into account when granting licences are: the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, prevention of public nuisance and the protection of children from harm.

Businesses and entertainment conceived as sexual (because of the parts of the body that get exposed) must be declared and submit to regulation: sex shops, peep shows, stripping, lap-dancing, pole-dancing, table dancing. Places that have these licences are referred to as Sex (Encounter) Establishments. Gentlemen’s clubs, strip pubs and other venues are included. Regulated activities may allow near nudity but prohibit dancers from standing closer than a metre/3 feet from customers. Regulations always prohibit touching.

Each local authority grants its own licences, which is what the following note from Camden, another borough of London, is about. When I was doing research, Camden had a large number of licensed premises offering sex entertainment. The current issue is whether the Council will include burlesque in the conception of entertainment that must be regulated as sexual.

Camden Council Statement on burlesque
Date: 29/7/09

Camden Council is not preventing burlesque performances in any premises in the borough, it embraces the diverse entertainment on offer in Camden.

Our concern is to ensure proper regulation of the premises proposing to offer licensable activity. Our focus is on the premises – not the performers. It is the responsibility of the venue’s licence holder to ensure they have the correct permission for the event they are hosting.

Burlesque performance in its widest form can include various art forms and this alone would not require a licence. The Council’s concern is with any performance which may involve nudity. The Council looks at each application on an individual basis to assess what type of licence is required.

The Council has met with the burlesque community in response to their concerns and agreed to seek a clearer understanding of what constitutes adult entertainment. This will help define what reasonable measures premises should put in place prior to adult entertainment being performed.

A further meeting between the Council and the Institute is scheduled to take place in September 2009.

More discussion at Save Burlesque in Camden

Recently I wrote about the New York School of Burlesque.

One thought on “Adult entertainment, Licensing, Dance, Burlesque, Sex, Camden

  1. Panty Buns

    There is a lot of vigilant work to be done in the fight for freedom of expression in the form of nude and semi-nude entertainment. The National Coalition Against Censorship, Audacia Ray, Feminists For Free Expression, and Avadon Carol have worked hard in that cause. On the question about worries concerning permission, I don’t think any government should be regulating how we are clothed, perform, pose, or are available for viewing by consenting adults.
    I have received some inquiries as to whether or not I had consented to the copying and sharing of the free panty photos of myself modeling ladies panties, back view.
    Let me put those concerns to rest by submitting this model release:
         I, Panty Buns, also known as Mister Panty, hereby irrevocably release all of the photos of myself in my full brief ladies panties modeled back view to be copied, shared, re-published and viewed by and for all adult women on the planet. I further declare and confirm that all of these free panty photos of myself posted at or as attachments to the web-pages at where comments may be made, are not subject to copyright and are in the public domain. This constitutes a permanent irrevocable release, authorization, plea and double dare to and for all adult women to copy and share my free panty photos at those web-pages and to attempt to cause the maximum possible relentless saturation media coverage in my ladies full brief panties modeled back view and my panty photos are posted in so many places that adult women can see them everywhere. I think it will serve me right if I’m made so famous that all women everywhere on earth are talking about me and my panties, laughing at me. and have seen me in my panties often enough to recognize me on the street, yell out their comments and thoughts and ask me embarrassing questions. Hope this wasn’t too off topic.


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