Worthing sex shop bid to become Taboo

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ANOTHER Worthing sex shop battle could be on the cards.

The former Pillowtalk outlet at 101 Rowlands Road will again be the subject of a licensing hearing, now a new application has been made for the shop to sell hard-core items such as R18 films, videos and DVDs.

Pillowtalk had a licence to sell such items until, last November, proprietor Alan Butler surrendered it as he was no longer involved in the business.

Since then, the premises has continued to operate as an unlicensed adult shop, with only a limited proportion of sex articles being offered for sale.

R18 material

Now, new owner, Rebos Investments Ltd, of Taboo, Surrey Street, Brighton, has applied to re-license the shop, under the name of Taboo, to sell R18 material, as well as offering “sex articles or other things intended for use in connection with, or for the purpose of stimulating or encouraging sexual activity or acts of force or restraint which are associated with sexual activity”.

Pillowtalk operated as a licensed sex shop between July 1, 2009, and November 2010.

A previous owner, Kathy Sutton, who ran the premises as Secret Desires, saw three sex shop licence applications turned down by the council’s licensing committee.

She then submitted a fourth bid, which was withdrawn when she sold the shop to Pillowtalk.

Public comment

Mr Butler’s subsequent application was accepted, despite 69 letters of objection.

The licensing committee must observe the rule that Worthing Council does not have the right to “have regard to the morality of sex establishments”.

The ruling also states “straightforward objections to on the grounds that sex establishments should not be allowed, have no part to play in a local authority consideration regarding these types of premises”.

Comments from the public about the application can be sent in writing to the council’s licensing unit at Adur Civic Centre, Ham Road, Shoreham-by-Sea, BN43 6PR.