Lap dancing club plans attacked

change pic Credit: Neil Bradford/ITV Anglia

Plans for a lap dancing club in an affluent market town have caused outrage among residents. A licence application has been submitted to convert a former cafe into a lap dancing club in the centre of Ampthill in Bedfordshire.

The town has been accused of snobbery in the past after dozens of residents objected to a new tattoo studio in January this year. The owners claimed they became the victims of a malicious hate campaign after opening up in the Georgian town.

The plans for the strip club in Market Square were only submitted on Friday and already objections have reached double figures.

Luan Hall runs toy shop "Fairies and Frogs" which is moving into premises opposite the proposed bar. She also reprsents local businesses under the banner "Totally Locally" and is concerned it is not right for Ampthill: "Ampthill is a town with lots of different things going on in it, but I think with the historic ambience Ampthill has, this would be the wrong thing to have right in the centre of Ampthill".

The man behind the licence application, John Shayler, who already runs a similar club on the A5 near Dunstable says keeping the shop empty is costing him hundreds of pounds a week.

Residents have until July 13 to register their objections, before a decision is made by Central Bedfordshire Council's licensing committee.

A spokesman told ITV Anglia "We will only be able to consider objections on licensing grounds to do with the suitability of the locality and being in keeping with the character of the area. We cannot accept objections that are made on purely subjective or moral grounds. Similarly the council cannot take a moral stand on this issue either in setting the Policy or determining licence applications."