Sex in the Suburbs: We take strict control says cinema owner
The internet may be where many people who use porn go to find it these days but there is still a place for the sex cinema according to the owner of one Midlands establishment.
The Foxy Lady Adult Cinema on Bilston's Oxford Street has been screening films, selling DVDs and sex toys since 1995.
As a business, it is unconventional, but fully legal, with all the required planning permission from the local authority. The owner hopes to open a dance bar at the end of June, and needs no further permission from the council to do so.
And while he admits business has been hit by the rise of online porn he says there is still a place for establishments such as his, as he says the online world is poorly regulated, whereas only over-18s can enter his premises.
"Little kids can see it online," he said.
Although he would not say how many customers the business had, he said most were in the 40s or 50s, and had heard about the cinema through word of mouth. The owner said most of those who come through his doors do so because they don't have a computer at home and are unable to access the internet via their mobile phones. "Business is not as good as it was, because people can do it privately in their own homes," he said.
"The customers just haven't got the internet," he added. "Many people, believe it or not, do not have telephones."
Women are not allowed into the cinema.
The owner said the rule is in place as a precaution against anyone engaging in sexual activities inside, which he insisted was banned.
The owner added: "We take strict control of the property. The licensing people have been down and double checked and there has been no problem."
The business was awarded a Sexual Entertainment Venue (SEV) licence in 2012, which is when the licences were introduced by the Government. Until then it met the legal requirement for the time. The owner said: "It's a very private industry. We just show films that are legal to show."
The SEV licence is up for annual renewal by planning bosses at Wolverhampton City Council and the renewal will be subject to a public consultation.
The business also houses a sex shop, which sells toys and DVDs. Opening hours are 11am to 11pm, seven days a week. The owner said the busiest times were in the evenings and on weekends. To go in it will set you back between £5 and £8, depending on the time of day.
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