Views on lap dancing clubs are poles apart

Opinions are divided when it comes to lap dancing clubs - with some people viewing the profession as an empowerment to women, while others perceive it as objectification. And the issue has now reappeared in the limelight as it has emerged many of these businesses across England and Wales could be closed due to changes in licensing rules.

The BBC reports the industry has changed markedly in recent years, with premises once found only in backstreets now appearing on the high street.

However, alterations to the regulations suggest this trend is likely to come to a halt - but differences in attitudes to such clubs will remain.

Indeed, not only have opinions towards the industry changed in the last ten years, but the profile of lap dancers has also undergone a transition - with recent findings from the University of Leeds showing one-in-four performers holding a degree.

Chantal Gautier, a Chartered Psychologist, said that there are two sides of the story when it comes to how women in the industry are treated.

She said: "Dancers in this study reported many positive experiences including increased confidence in sexuality, mastery in seduction and feeling empowered."

However, Ms Gautier added: "Some dancers reported difficulties in regulating stigma, control and self-esteem. As a result, a complex power dialectic emerges - whilst esteem and control are gained from dancing, they are lost through social comparison and low earnings."