Ipswich: Outrage at The Smock pub’s licence bid to host strippers on Maidenhall estate

IPSWICH: Concerned community leaders today blasted an estate pub’s bid to be allowed to put on adult entertainment – including strippers.

Residents on the Maidenhall estate in south west Ipswich are objecting to an application by The Smock pub for an adult entertainment licence, which would allow them to put on strippers, Burlesque dancers and similar forms of entertainment, as well as letting them stay open until 2.30am.

Although owners of the Maidenhall Approach pub have insisted they would only make use of the new powers very occasionally, those in the surrounding area have contacted Bridge councillors Bryony Rudkin, Philip Smart and Jim Powell to complain of possible noise and anti-social behaviour.

Mrs Rudkin said: “We feel very strongly that this is not the right sort of area for this.

“The policing in town is very good because there are lots of bars in a small area and the police know where things are, whereas this would be completely out of the way because it’s actually a very quiet area.

“It’s not part of the night-time economy at all.”

Councillors and community leaders have collected nearly 100 objections.

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A number of parents and teachers at the area’s three schools and children’s centre – including Stoke High, Halifax and Hillside primary schools – are concerned about the pub’s proximity to schools and the possible impact of any advertising.

Mr Smart said: “I don’t think anyone would object to adult entertainment in the town centre, but not in a residential area.

“There are a lot of people complaining about possible noise and disturbance.”

Pub landlord Stephen Hart insisted there would be no advertising of adult nights outside the pub and if he were granted the licence, it would only be used occasionally for hen or stag nights and similar events.

“I don’t think anyone’s got anything to worry about,” said Mr Hart. “Even if we had something like strippers, it would only be an occasional thing.

“It’s handy to have this [permission for adult entertainment] on your licence because if I want to have an adult night, it costs �21 for a one-off licence each time.”

Several community groups have also objected to the application.

The application is scheduled to be considered by Ipswich Borough Council’s licensing committee in the first week of April.

n What do you think of having adult entertainment at The Smock? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send an e-mail to eveningstar letters@eveningstar.co.uk

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