Windmill club in Soho is being sold to US giant DeJaVu

I hear on the grapevine that the venerable Windmill club in Soho is being sold to US giant DeJaVu for price rumoured to be over £6m. This will presumably bring an end to the career of Oscar Owide one of Soho’s most colourful and longest serving characters.

Owide {74} has run several clubs and restaurants in the area including Chaplins, the Stork, and Bentley’s, has been jailed for VAT evasion, heavily fined for operating as a company Director when banned, and had a short lived and very acrimonious partnership with celebrity chef Marco Pierre White. He has operated the Windmill successfully since 1994, I understand the club will be rebranded Hustler by the new owners.

The new late night licenses for pubs have predictably badly hit the conventional nightclub trade hard with large groups like Luminar announcing falls in profits and considerable rationalisation going on. I’d expect this to fuel a new rush of table dancing clubs in the next few months as the owners try to find a way of filling their redundant sites.

My personal view though is that {apart from a few places like York and Manchester} most cities in the UK already have enough TD clubs and unless some sort of new format is used these will not be successful.

I understand that HM Revenue and Customs have again been turning their attention again to dancers status as self employed having recently won some cases against house Orchestras and bands. The argument is that a girl who only works at one place is effectively an employee and therefore should be paying tax and NI. So far all the cases against dancers have failed, probably because unlike musicians dancers pay the club to work there.


The former FYEO Mayfair club now has a web site  though not much actually on it yet. Ex Miss Shoreditch the lovely Varona from Argentina has reversed recent trends by moving from the White Horse to Browns. Very welcome news of a long defunct strip pub the “Victoria” in Hayes reopening. It’s just Monday and Thursday all day from mid August to start with but let’s hope it soon gets back to the 7 days a week walkabout style  it did 5 or 6 years ago. It’s supplied by the Angels Exotic agency. I understand a branch of the famous high class Sugar Hut Thai restaurant chain in Brentwood, Essex is to start table dancing late in September.

Talking of strip pubs {rare beasts outside London these days} I hear a new one is called “Chancers” is opening in Bush St, Pembroke Dock in Wales. Also new to me is a private members only pub called the “3 Squirrels” in Detling Hill near Maidstone, Kent details via  .

An attempt is being made on the world pole dance record in aid of Cancer UK and to be verified by the Guiness book of records, see for details. The first club in Torquay now has a web site . I understand the “ Heat for Men” club in West Bromwich has reverted to it’s original name of the “Fantasy Bar”. Club XS in Hastings now has a web site. UK Burlesque star Lily White has her own web site . The proposed “ Blues” club in Peckham had it’s licence application turned down but “ Shakers” in Burnham on sea is appealing against it’s rejection by the council.

Edinburgh council has proposed new guidelines for clubs in that city which seem to be aimed solely at closing them all down. The new rules include strictly topless only, no contact, and CCTV cameras everywhere, Peter Stringfellow has said he will abandon interest in opening a club there if they are put in place.


Talking of Peter Stringfellow, despite the high profile failure of the Dublin club and the company having to make a provision against the law suit pending regarding the death of a customer at the hands of one of the clubs bouncers, he is thinking about floating the company next year. It would be the first club chain of it’s type to make a full public offering and it will be interesting to see the attitude of the financial institutions to this. In Dublin it emerged at a stormy creditors meeting in August that the club there had managed to lose an amazing 2.6m Euro’s in it’s 5 months of opening.

A new club called the “ Sugar Lounge” is set to open in Reading on September 1st.Crewe which is one of the few places left in the UK without a club looks like having 2 soon, one called “Trilogy” has just got a license and another to be called “Rendevous” in the High Street is applying for one. An application to open a new club in Burnley {the only previous one Afterlife apparently closed in 2004} in the former Calamity Jane bar in Hammerton St has been made.

An application to open a 2nd club in Bedford called “Marciano’s” in a former hairdressers on the High St has been made. I understand that the former Munroe’s/FYEO in Bradford may soon re-open and with the imminent opening of the “ Blue Pelican” the city will have 2 venues.. Long Legs one of Manchester 2 topless places has gone full nude and also obtained a late license, I would expect the Fantasy Bar to follow suite and also several additional clubs to open in one city which is still very underserved by clubs relative to the rest of the UK.


An application has been made to open another club in the Oldham area, this one is called “Legends” and is in Rochdale Rd, Shaw. “ The Office” in Morecombe has been operating as a pole dance bar since November last year finally has a full nude license { which interestingly apparently allows some contact} and shows started in August. “Direktors” the new up market Blue Box leisure club opens in September, it’s the organisations 4th club in Leeds and 5th in total. I hear that a first as yet unnamed club will be opening in York on the 15th of the month. Another as yet unnamed club is opening in Birmingham in the Broad St area.

Long running BBC soap Eastenders has got a new resident called SJ {left}who it will emerge works as a stripper, something like the real East End at last !


The Windmill International Londons Oldest Strip Cabaret gets a makeover…….

Soho’s historic Windmill club sold to US giant DeJaVu ?

The feature film about the old Windmill theatre the UK’s first nude venue in the 1930s

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Author: Saxon is covering the European Striptease industry with monthly updates on or famous London Gossip, Interviews with industry people, articles and news from the world of striptease. We also offer a Striptalk forum, Industry Directory with Stripclubs and Agents and a Job board for the Striptease industry in Europe.