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wyounger

Edinburgh Sauna Licences

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I started a thread about Edinburgh Saunas on one of the other Forums by asking some questions one of which was:

Can someone explain the Licence Numbers on the adverts?

Nobody provided a clear answer; one idea seems to be that the Saunas are at risk of fire, but I know of licences places, which despite advertising in the Evening News under Saunas, don't actually have one.

So who can advise what the system is?

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"Edinburgh was the first city in the UK to grant saunas and massage parlours public entertainment licences in 1986, in accordance with the provisions of the Civic Government Act (Scotland) of 1982. There were originally more than 20 premises which fell into this category. The licensing regime - in which the council appeared to turn a blind eye to sex for sale in these saunas/parlours - was apparently originally intended to tackle the problem of street prostitution in the city, to give prostitutes relatively safe places to work, and to help to reduce the spread of HIV/Aids and other sexually transmitted diseases. As of December 2008, the number of licensed premises was 13. If the establishments concerned breach the terms of their licences, their licences can be (and have been) revoked. There is, however, considerable anecdotal evidence gathered over a long period of time which does indeed suggest an attitude of tolerance on the part of the local authorities towards these premises. Unlicensed saunas/parlours run the risk of closure, and brothels are dealt with as brothels."

I got the above from oldestprof.com:

http://oldestprof.com/index.php/sexlaws/420-sex-laws-in-scotland

Have a look at the Council's website:

http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/info/309/public_entertainment_licences/935/public_entertainment

Perhaps some of the licensed saunas choose to show their licence number in the advert whereas others don't.

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Sorry; I meant that some places advertise under 'Saunas' but don't actually have a Sauna on the premises , eg Gentle Touch.

Also the Council site says a licence is needed if there is an entry charge, and not all make such a charge, eg also Gentle Touch

But thanks for the links

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I've been to so-called "Saunas" that don't actually have a sauna. In this case it's just a euphemism for brothel. You and I know that they're brothels and so does Edinburgh City Council.

The Council have to licence them as something. So presumably they licence them as a sauna.

I wouldn't get too concerned about the "entry charge" point. Clearly it's not a free service!!!

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I am still non the wiser. Even if it was not out of sheer nosiness, as a consumer you would think you were entitled to know what the licences of places you use mean. I rang Edinburgh Council and first nobody wanted to admit to knowing anything at all then I got an evasive tale about hairdressers and tattoo shops. In my Evening news I cannot see any licence numbers for these, but they are on every Sauna advert. So whats the difference? Could one of the legal experts or a sauna manager enlighten us or point us in the direction of the Regulations for this?

By the way, if it is true that Sauna owners are blocking reviews on PN, and there do seem to be fewer and fewer reports, it will be a big loss to me. Is the licence system the cause of this?

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I am still non the wiser. Even if it was not out of sheer nosiness, as a consumer you would think you were entitled to know what the licences of places you use mean. I rang Edinburgh Council and first nobody wanted to admit to knowing anything at all then I got an evasive tale about hairdressers and tattoo shops. In my Evening news I cannot see any licence numbers for these, but they are on every Sauna advert. So whats the difference? Could one of the legal experts or a sauna manager enlighten us or point us in the direction of the Regulations for this?

By the way, if it is true that Sauna owners are blocking reviews on PN, and there do seem to be fewer and fewer reports, it will be a big loss to me. Is the licence system the cause of this?

Some of the big saunsa took their PN reports down a few years ago The story at the time was they were being investigated for tax. The thought was the reports gave some idea of their trade.

I never heard so much bollocks. If the tax authorities wanted to know the trade, they would park outside, and count the customers going in. This is a practice used against Indian Resturants and takeaways when there is a thought that VAT or other tax fraud is happening.

I am rather intrigued though you are taking so much interest in the licensing issues of saunas

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I'm not sure I can work out what the question here actually is: the links silverado provided are excellent. You want to operate a massage parlour, then you apply for a Public Entertainment Licence. If you get your licence and you want to advertise in the local newspaper the wording is up to you, but the choice of wording and quoting licence numbers reassures punters that they'll be fine as the council says it's ok.

Whether you really will be ok is another matter, as there've been a couple of public figures outed as punters, including a policeman on duty, in the last few years.

For info: Purely for research I went to Gentle Touch yesterday and asked if there was a door fee, and was told it was included in the room. Obviously I then paid the researcher for some time together in the room; it would have been rude not to. :)

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I am still non the wiser. Even if it was not out of sheer nosiness, as a consumer you would think you were entitled to know what the licences of places you use mean. I rang Edinburgh Council and first nobody wanted to admit to knowing anything at all then I got an evasive tale about hairdressers and tattoo shops. In my Evening news I cannot see any licence numbers for these, but they are on every Sauna advert. So whats the difference? Could one of the legal experts or a sauna manager enlighten us or point us in the direction of the Regulations for this?

Here's a link to the Civic Government Act (Scotland) Act 1982:

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1982/45/contents

Section 41(1) A licence, to be known as a “public entertainment licence”, shall be required for the use of premises as a place of public entertainment..

(2)In this section, “place of public entertainment” means any place where, on payment of money or money’s worth, members of the public are admitted or may use any facilities for the purposes of entertainment or recreation....

Schedule 1 of the Act sets out the procedures and provisions relating to the PEL.

Paragraph 14(3) of the Schedule provides that:

The register shall be open to the inspection of any member of the public at such reasonable times and places as may be determined by the licensing authority and any member of the public may make a copy thereof or an extract therefrom.

You could make a nuisance of yourself and ask the Council to inspect the register.

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Thank you Silverado, I have a copy of that Act at work and I may be gallus enough to ask to inspect the register.

Looks as if Gentle Touch should be giving me commission, and I trust Bongo enjoyed himself!

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I don't know just how solidly based Edinburgh's long term tolerance of brothels in the (no-one fooled) guise of "saunas" is! It would be an awful pity if a citizen's demand to search the register of licenced establishments were to trigger any sudden change in policy! It only needs one HH clone to speak up in Council...

Next time you go to Scorpio, I think you'll find the licence in a frame by the door - you could look at it there, and take notes.

Just don't rock the boat too much!

Edited by Irgendeiner

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The no reports policy, is partly for tax reasons, but mainly not to flaunt what is going on. You can if you wish apply to open a sauna, and if there arent too many objections from the neighbours, the council will grant you a license. In recent years attempts to open one in Dalkeith rd, and off the walk, were rejected on these grounds.

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Today in the evening news, a report about glam massage in Easter rd applying for a license. The usual suspects have come forward to object, labour activists and guardian readers etc. To be honest its a bit too public a street, to be a successful venue. Carols is at the quiter end of Easter rd.

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I don't know just how solidly based Edinburgh's long term tolerance of brothels in the (no-one fooled) guise of "saunas" is! It would be an awful pity if a citizen's demand to search the register of licenced establishments were to trigger any sudden change in policy! It only needs one HH clone to speak up in Council...

Next time you go to Scorpio, I think you'll find the licence in a frame by the door - you could look at it there, and take notes.

Just don't rock the boat too much!

There have been 'stirrings' recently and in the near future Edinburgh may find it's saunas will be closing down.

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There have been 'stirrings' recently and in the near future Edinburgh may find it's saunas will be closing down.

Please don't tease us Melanie, and please tell us more about these 'stirrings', my sanity and career depends on occasionally biting my lip when taking some crap from young girls who think they're it, knowing that within the month I'll be sneaking off the Edinburgh by-pass for some paid fun and frolics.

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The remarks in the Evening News from MPs etc about possible disturbance in this already busy and noisy part of Easter Road must mean that they think Glam's management will not be up to the standard of the other Saunas around. The MPs office is in Leith Walk almost directly across the street from No 18 (OK, yes I do know its a gay one, and no I've not been in) but I am pretty sure they have never heard or seen any disturbance there. I know someone who get a bus from the stop outside No 18 every day, and it took him 10 years to realise he was standing outside a brothel.

In the past 20 years or more I have been in most of the saunas in Edinburgh, and although I have been told of trouble by some of the girls I have never seen any for myself, inside or outside. From what I gather most trouble is drink related, and lots of places such as restaurants all over Scotland let alone Edinburgh have to deal with this.

Do Glam have another place in Gorgie?-- a lot handier for me! Mind you, I must be naive, I thought these were fancy underwear and party dress shops!

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Please don't tease us Melanie, and please tell us more about these 'stirrings', my sanity and career depends on occasionally biting my lip when taking some crap from young girls who think they're it, knowing that within the month I'll be sneaking off the Edinburgh by-pass for some paid fun and frolics.

There is a large force of MPs who want to criminalise the purchase of sex, the management and advertising. This is no secret, Trish Godman tried once last year, is trying again. She may fail because elections are soon. In May I am sure they will try again, and the ban will be total throughout Scotland. The sex industry will continue through independents, a*******k and illegal brothels and agencies, but the safe and hospitable saunas in Edinburgh will have no option but to close.

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There is a large force of MPs who want to criminalise the purchase of sex, the management and advertising. This is no secret, Trish Godman tried once last year, is trying again. She may fail because elections are soon. In May I am sure they will try again, and the ban will be total throughout Scotland. The sex industry will continue through independents, a*******k and illegal brothels and agencies, but the safe and hospitable saunas in Edinburgh will have no option but to close.

So who should an Edinburgh punter vote for?

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Bring back Tommy Sheridan?

Very good, Margo MCdonald, talks a bit of sense on this subject, shes independant. As the council make a bit of money from sauna licenses, perhaps the business is safe.

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