The organiser of a sex convention says he has been told to remove the word “sex” from the name of his event – or be banned from Hove Town Hall.
Brighton psychotherapist Steve Griffiths was planning to hold the Love, Sex and Intimacy Fair in September as an event to dispel taboos, tackle discrimination and promote safe sex.
However he says he has been told by tourism bosses that he will have to remove the word sex from the title if he wants to use the council venue.
After The Argus contacted the council about the event, Mr Griffiths was told that it would have to be approved by even more council officials before the request would be accepted.
Mr Griffiths said the event was not sleazy and professionals – including Brighton and Hove’s director of public health Tom Scanlon – were already signed up to take part in the event.
He said: “We are waiting for confirmation that we can hold the event at Hove Town Hall because they didn’t like the word ‘sex’ in the title.
“They suggested we call it “southern intimacy” instead. It’s a bit ridiculous.
“Now the Hove Centre has told me that the staff are fine with it but because The Argus asked about it they have to go all around the council to get approval.
“People are more likely to get confused if ‘sex’ isn’t in the title.
“We are hoping about 2,000 to 3,000 people will come to the event over the weekend.
“If we can’t hold it at Hove Town Hall then we’ll hold it somewhere else, but we would want the council to be involved so we can get a licence and permission to sell sex toys.
“I’m sure there are plenty of hotels and other venues that would welcome us.
“The event is about sex but it won’t be tawdry. It is supported by health professionals.
“We don’t want to cause any offence, but if we do cause offence by simply talking about sex, then that’s their problem.”
A council spokeswoman said: “The organisers have only just approached the council and, as with all proposals, we will give it and the suggested date careful consideration.”
Talking point? To what extent do you think the request to change the name is an over reaction or the right thing to do? Share your views by commenting below or write to the letters editor or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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