The Tab dons a dirty mac to investigate Cambridge’s premier sex shop.
“The Private Shop” , just across the river from Jesus college, proudly boast that they sell R18 rated DVDs and videos, with scenes of “spunk, pissing… triple penetration” that are at the edge of legality in the UK – and has recently applied to the council to stay open 7 days a week.
Despite opposition from Christian groups, calling the shop “seedy” and that it “exploits people’s weaknesses and lust”, a saleswoman at the store said it was “fingers crossed” for the application to go through.
The parent company – Darker Enterprises Ltd – wants to “generate as much business as possible” to ensure “the continued employment” of their workers.
While one of their opponents, Peter Lynas of “Keep Sunday Special”, said “the majority…do not want greater Sunday opening”, and councillor Max Boyce said he has “never seen anyone going into that shop”, while our reporter was inside there was a healthy flow of men in and out the door.
Other residents, however, think it would only be fair to allow Sunday opening, and say the shop is a responsible business that does not sell to children.
One saleswomen, speaking to The Tab, was adamant they “ID anyone who looks remotely under 18”.
She pointed out that Ann Summers, which also stocks porn DVDs, can open on a Sunday.
Supermarkets such as Sainsbury's on Sidney Street, freely sell condoms and lube on a Sunday.
The Council’s rules say sex shops, and adult cinemas, can’t open on Sunday, Good Friday, or Christmas – but councillor Colin Rosenstiel, who supports the plans, said "when we set the current model standard for licences we forgot about sex, as one does”.
Councillor Jennifer Liddle, the transgender partner of Jenny Bailey, ex-Mayor of Cambridge and herself also transgender, agreed that the rules were “anachronistic” and due for a change.
So Darker Enterprises, who are so sure of the quality of their films they will “happily show you exactly what you will be getting for your money!” instore, might be getting their wish granted by Cambridge’s liberal (and Liberal) council, after all, and their customers will be able to satisfy their desires every single day, if they fancy.