You need a licence from us to run:
any premises selling sex toys, books or videos
sexual entertainment venues such as lap-dancing clubs and strip shows
venues where sexually explicit films are shown to members of the public.
A licence lasts for one year.
What happens if I don't apply for a licence?
You can be fined up to £20,000 if you run a sex establishment without a licence, or if you break any of the conditions of your licence
Are there any restrictions?
Licences will be refused if you:
are under 18 years old
have been disqualified from holding a licence
have not been resident in the UK for at least six months immediately before you make your application
are not incorporated in the UK, where the applicant is a company
have been refused a licence or a licence renewal within the last 12 months.
How do I apply?
Complete the application form online. You will also need to:
give public notice of your application by publishing a notice in a local newspaper within seven days of the application being made and
display a notice [DOCX, 49Kb], which can be easily read by the public, on or near the premises for 21 days from the date of the application.
The licence application fee is £2,824.
Does tacit consent apply?
No. This means you must obtain a licence before operating a sex establishment. Please contact us if you have not heard from us within a reasonable period
There is a right of appeal to the Magistrates’ Court for a period of 21 days.
We advise that consumer complaints are first made to the trader, preferably in the form of a letter (with proof of delivery). If that does not work, further advice is available from Citizens Advice.