THE first ‘gentleman’s club’ in Solihull is set to throw open its doors later this month - despite fears that it could cheapen the character of the historical and affluent borough.
Rubber stamped by council planners 12 months ago, the Opal Lounge night club in the town centre has been refurbished by businessman, Richard Mackay, into Honey Club, an upmarket exotic dance venue catering mainly for businessmen and visitors to the borough.
The High Street nightspot will be open from 10pm until 4am and will feature pole dancers as well as private booths costing £150 a time.
Mr Mackay, who sits on the board of Solihull BID, a project designed to help local businesses enhance their trading environment by investing in local improvements was keen, however, to reassure people his club would be good news for the town.
“I have liaised with at least six different bodies including licensing, fire officers and the police and it’s taken me two years of planning to get this far.” said the 37-year-old.
“The basement location lends itself to the opening hours, there are no residents nearby and we will be open six nights a week.
“It’s not seedy and no one will be naked in the main area. It will be an exclusive club strictly for the over 25s.”
But some Solihull shoppers were not convinced. David and Margaret Bick from Chelmsley Wood said the club would lower the tone of the town. “It will attract the wrong type of people. Also it’s going to need extra resources like more police.”
Royal Mail workers Kevin Weekes and Stuart Cockerill were in favour of the venue. Kevin from Dorridge said:“ It’s not going to do any harm. It depends on the sort of people who will go there.”
And at least one business in the town centre said they were unconcerned with plans to open the club.
Jane Lloyd, manager of health food store Holland & Barrett said they had never had any problems with the Opal Lounge. “ If it doesn’t interfere with the company then I am not worried.”
A Solihull Council spokesman confirmed the current licence they held for the Opal Lounge involved exotic dancing and an extended licence in the basement.
Honey Club has its first VIP night on October 23. Visit www.thehoneyclubsolihull.com .
* If you have any concerns about the club e-mail richard on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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