Town Hall strip club row

Peter Callow
Peter Callow
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THE Tory former town hall leader has hit out at plans to double the amount of strip clubs allowed in Blackpool.

And Coun Peter Callow has branded Labour the “party of sleaze” after recommending twice the amount of lap-dancing clubs be allowed to operate in the resort than previously suggested.

Coun Callow (pictured) said the new ruling group was betraying families looking for good clean fun.

But Labour said it was actually tightening up the rules on strip clubs.

Councillors will meet on Thursday to consider a new policy for the licensing of sex entertainment venues.

Under the previous Tory administration, it had been proposed to limit the number of clubs to two. But the Labour group is recommending four although each application will be considered on its own merit.

Coun Callow said: “When we came to power four years ago, there were 13 lap-dancing clubs in Blackpool.

“We took a zero tolerance approach and eventually there were only two.

“Now Labour is unravelling everything we did and proving themselves to be the party of sleaze by increasing the number to four.

“Our intention was to make Blackpool family friendly and carry out our duty of protecting children from harm. Labour is going completely against this.”

But council leader Coun Simon Blackburn hit back saying his party was putting families first.

He said: “Coun Callow’s obsession with this subject meant many much more important issues such as economic growth and child poverty were ignored.

“This is not a mistake I want to repeat.

“His stance, while understandable, only served to drive these clubs underground, putting an extra burden on police and enforcement teams.

“The position now is more realistic and we are actually tightening up the rules.

“This administration is putting families at the heart of Blackpool’s entertainment industry and working with attractions such as the Tower, Pleasure Beach, Comedy Carpet and Sandcastle to keep visitors flocking back.”