A LAP dancing club has had its licence renewed - but some councillors raised concerns about the venue, saying they feel it is “unsavoury and demeaning”.

Upstairs at 53 to 55 Micklegate applied for its existing sexual entertainment venue licence to be renewed, which allows it to open from 9pm to 3am every day of the week and from 6pm to 4.30am on York Racecourse days.

A sex establishment licence is valid for 12 months, so must be renewed annually.

And although members of the licensing committee heard that there had been no police incidents at the venue, one councillor said she would like to be able to refuse the application.

Speaking at a meeting on Monday, Cllr Barbara Boyce said: “I know that they’re not illegal but I still think it’s unsavoury and I still think it’s trading in women’s bodies.

“It’s against our own policies to have this kind of entertainment at times when there are still shoppers on the streets, people leaving school, young people around. That we should be having naked women dancing for money at 6pm - I’m not comfortable with it and I do find it is quite demeaning to women.”

Cllr Ann Reid added: “I have some sympathy about the moral issue.”

The council’s sexual entertainment venue policy says clubs should not open before 9pm, but the meeting heard that Upstairs already had a licence to open at 6pm on race days before the new policy was established.

Cllr Dave Taylor said: “Well I don’t disagree with Cllr Boyce’s views on the morality of the issue. But we are not permitted to make a decision on moral grounds legally.”

And Cllr Tony Richardson added that the club is not on the ground floor of the building, so children will not be able to see activities, “whether they are right or wrong”.

A report prepared for the meeting says there will be at least two door supervisors during opening hours and CCTV covers all areas, including each dance booth.

There were no objections to the application.