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Gloucestershire Business News

Two Pigs lap dancing in Cheltenham

Lap dancing could take place during two more of Cheltenham's busy race meetings if an application from a town centre pub is successful.

The 2 Pigs already holds a licence to host sexual entertainment nights during the National Hunt Festival in March.

Bosses at the Church Street venue have now applied to Cheltenham Borough Council to add extra dates during the October and November meetings at Prestbury Park.

The 2 Pigs in Church Street

The pub is slap-bang in the centre of Cheltenham Town centre, close to the junction between the High Street and Promenade and just a stone's throw from Cheltenham Minster.

Its current licence allows it to hold lap dancing nights during the four-day Festival meeting in March.

If granted, the extended licence will run from 8pm until 5am from Friday, October 25 to Sunday October 27 for the Showcase meeting and during the same times from Friday, November 16 to Monday, November 18 for the November Meeting.

The previous licence agreement was granted in 2017 despite more than 50 letters of objection.

If permission is granted the pub would be able to host lap dancing organised by Red Apple Associates, which uses the trading name Eroticats.

The borough council has received two objections to the new opening hours, from Gloucestershire Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre (GRASAC) and a local resident.

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The police have raised no objections to the application.

Writing to the borough council, GRASAC said people have been approached by strangers "requesting sexual favours" during race meetings.

They said: "GRASAC have been working with staff from Cheltenham Borough Council as well as the police as evidence was gathered prior to the recent race week that individuals (mostly, but not entirely, women) have been approached requesting sexual favours or at times grabbed or groped, in particular during the period of race meetings."

Commenting on the objections, the owner of the 2 Pigs pub Nicholas Binding told the Local Democracy Reporting Service: "If people have any issue with it, then look at our incident rate for the last five years which is zero.

"Everyone is happy it is happening because it is controlled and perfectly legal."

One local resident who did not want to be named said: "I have previously made the mistake of booking tickets for a show at the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham during a race meeting.

"The show was great, but walking back home through the town centre (by the most direct route) with my 12-year-old was not, running the gamut of promoters and large groups of drunken men, and this would make me less likely to book a similar event during a race meeting in future."

According to a council document, a borough council officer said the authority does not "take any moral stand" in relation to operation of sex establishments.

The report said: "The committee is also reminded that the borough council does not take any moral stand in relation to operation of sex establishments such as sexual entertainment venues because the borough council recognises that Parliament has made it lawful to operate a sex establishment and that such businesses are a legitimate part of the retail and leisure industries.

"It is this council's role as the Licensing Authority to administer the licensing regime in accordance with the statutory provisions."

Councillors will determine the application on July 3.

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