Owner says sex shop won't be seedy
WE are not going to be seedy…we'll be open and friendly and just slightly more risque than Marks & Spencer.That was the message from Stephen Wesley who has applied to have Ipswich's first ever licensed sex shop.
By Amanda Cresswell
WE are not going to be seedy…we'll be open and friendly and just slightly more risque than Marks & Spencer.
That was the message from Stephen Wesley who has applied to have Ipswich's first ever licensed sex shop.
If the shop gets the go-ahead it will be sandwiched between the Christian Science Reading Room and the Suffolk Animal Rescue shop in St Matthew's Street.
The proposed premises has had a mixed reaction from shop owners on St Matthew's Street, with the Christian Science Reading Room already voicing their concerns.
But Mr Wesley was quick to respond to claims that it would bring the area down-market and instead said the shop – subject to approval from Ipswich borough council – will have a welcoming frontage and will steer clear of anything seedy.
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"We are basically following the Anne Summers line," said Mr Wesley. "The main push will be lingerie.
"It is now the year 2002 and we want to bring it up to date and hope to work with shopkeepers on the street and bend over backwards so we don't offend anyone.
"The reason why we have gone for the licence is that the sex licensing procedure is a bit of a grey area.
"To make sure that we fall in with the correct legislature we are applying for the licence, which is basically our company procedure.
"We are desperate to get across the point that it is not going to be a seedy sex shop. We want it to be a place where a lady on her own can go in to and to make it suitable for disabled people – basically a place where all people can be comfortable.
"The front of the shop is subject to planning but we really want a nice display and we don't want to have blacked out windows. The word sex won't be anywhere to be seen just the words 'adult store'. It is not a standard sex shop. We want to bring it out in the open."
The store, which will employ two full time staff, will sell sex toys but Mr Wesley from Sheffield-based Ecclesall Trading Company Limited is so far undecided whether videos will be sold.
If all goes according to plan the sex shop, called ETC, could open in May or June and Mr Wesley hopes to have a chain of the stores in major towns.