Well known veteran comic, Chubby Brown, was due to appear at the venue, run by Sheffield City Trust on behalf of the city council, in January 2022 but the show was axed after concerns were raised about the nature of his material.
Sheffield City Trust said: “We don’t believe this show reflects Sheffield City Trust values, particularly our ambition that our leisure, culture and entertainment venues are inclusive for all in Sheffield.”
The 76-year-old, whose real name is Royston Vasey, has since spoken out, blaming 'snowflakes and political correctness' for his act being dropped from the calendar at a venue where he has performed for more than three decades.
Former Lib Dem Leader of Sheffield City Council, Lord Paul Scriven, said: “The right to offend is a fundamental right in a democracy. If the show is legal, what right have the council got to slap a ban on things they personally don't like?
“There are many comedians who aren’t my cup of tea – Chubby Brown being one of them. Do you know what I do? I don’t buy a ticket. It’s as simple as that.
“But what I’m most concerned about is the precedence this sets. Sheffield City Council cannot be the thought police for half a million people. What will they disagree with that is legal and decide they can ban next?”
Lib Dem Leader on Sheffield City Council, Councillor Shaffaq Mohammed, said: “This smells of ‘we know best’ censorship. I’m a Liberal so I believe that we all have the right to make our own decisions about our own life within the law.
“I’ll be questioning the Labour/Green coalition about their involvement in this ban at the next council meeting. This act has been coming here for decades so I want to know why they’ve only just decided he shouldn’t be allowed.
“I personally wouldn’t be paid to go see Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown but it’s not my role to ban people from having a night out to see a comedian I don’t like.”