London's East End has always been celebrated for its traditional values so the Amorist was delighted to read that Shoreditch's Community Association objected strongly to the recent closure of a strip club at the White Horse pub, to make way for an upmarket restaurant run by Selfridges food chief Brian Hannon.
The twirl of nipple tassles and twining of long legs around poles had entertained loyal customers – including the ‘City Boys’ from down the road – for over three decades. Described as ‘the last of the decent East End pubs’ by Edie Lamort from the East London Strippers Collective, it was where a beer mug was passed round for punters to pay £1 each – although thankfully for the performers, many would add in notes.
Three generations of women ran the pub in traditional East End matriarch fashion and The White Horse was where the Collective began, so they threw a funeral and party when the club closed because ‘we felt like it was the end of a golden era for East End stripping’ says Sassy Billie.
Closure of the White Horse sadly means no more ‘Sunday Worship’: a Sunday afternoon striptease attracting hungover Shoreditch hipsters, lonely old men and thirsty shoppers from Brick Lane market. (The Amorist feels this narrative has all the necessary sequins and sawdust for a perfect musical).
Thankfully, the gorgeous girls of the Collective still perform at other venues and continue ‘to promote the self-organisation of strippers and lapdancers in London and the UK.’ Long may they continue to challenge society’s attitudes, take control over working conditions, entertain audiences and empower their dancers.
The Amorist plans to catch up with them at their monthly party at Club Aquarium.
I want a red dress. I want it flimsy and cheap, I want it too tight, I want to wear it until someone tears it off me.