Sample letter: Sheffield Council, renew Spearmint Rhino SEV licence

We support the dancers at Sheffield’s Spearmint Rhino, whose jobs may be under threat due to objections to the renewal of the club’s Sexual Entertainment Venue licence. If you’d like to write to Sheffield City Council to express your support for the renewal of the club’s licence, we’ve put together a sample letter which you can use. Edit away – your letter will be stronger if you make it your own. Letters or emails must be received by April 7th.

Email: licensingservice@sheffield.gov.uk

Write to:
Head of Licensing, Licensing Section
Block C, Staniforth Road Depot
Staniforth Road
Sheffield S9 3HD

SAMPLE LETTER

Suggested email title: I SUPPORT the renewal of Spearmint Rhino SEV licence

Dear Sir/Madam,
I am writing in support of the application for renewal of a Sexual Entertainment Venue license for Spearmint Rhino at 60 Brown Street, Sheffield, S1 2BS.

I believe that the venue does not violate the conditions for a renewal of its licence. The clientele of Spearmint Rhino do not increase levels of crime and disorder in the area, or disturb residents with noise pollution and anti-social behaviour. Standard bars and nightclubs in the city centre cause much greater inconvenience for local residents. Spearmint Rhino does not present concerns on the grounds of public nuisance or public safety.

The venue is not close to a school, nursery, place of worship, or hospital. Its late hours of operation mean that customers are not in the area at the same time as students of Freeman College or University Technical College Sheffield. The Spearmint Rhino premises are of neutral appearance and do not feature conspicuous advertisements. I do not believe the presence of this venue has a negative impact on the character of the city’s Cultural Industries Quarter.

Sheffield City Council has “statutory obligations in relation to disability race and gender”. Refusing to renew this application would have a disproportionate effect on women, who make up the greatest proportion of employees at the club.

I ask that you grant this application. Thank you for considering my letter of support.

Kind regards,

PERSONAL EVIDENCE

The following is from one of our letters:

‘I live less than five minutes from Spearmint Rhino and have never been bothered by its clientele. I do not feel nervous in the proximity of the venue and do not take different routes to avoid walking past it during the day or late at night. I have suffered harassment, groping and sexual threats in Sheffield, but not in the area surrounding Spearmint Rhino. I have been involved in feminist activism in Sheffield for many years and do not feel that the existence of the venue has a negative impact on women and non-binary people in the city.’

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