Pole dancing studio still waiting for Sheffield Council approval

New owners have taken over a pole dancing studio in Sheffield that was open for two years without planning permission.

By Molly Williams, local democracy reporter
Thursday, 27 June, 2019, 12:49
The property on Taplin Road before Off the Ground moved in.

Off the Ground, on Taplin Road, Hillsborough, opened in March offering lessons on pole dancing including choreography and sessions called ‘filthy Fridays’.

But despite being open for more than three months, owner Sarah Bibby is still awaiting official permission from Sheffield Council to use it as a dance studio.

Sarah submitted a pre-application advice form ahead of moving in and took over from a different dancing business who she said used it for classes for more than two years.

But Michael Cain, a planning officer at the council, said there was no record of it being used as a dance studio, adding the last known use was for offices and storage.

He said: “There is no record of planning permission being granted for such a use for this building.

“Planning records indicate that the building has been vacant at certain periods; however the last known use appears to be B1 and B8.”

He added that housing “tends to be the preferred use” for such areas but said a dance studio would be acceptable, if a change of use was approved and recorded.

Ms Bibby assured them that there would be no problems.

“The previous owners never had any issues or complaints.

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“I have provided tenants of the residential property above with my contact details, and urged them to contact me should I disturb them.

“When I asked for more detail, the tenant in the flat directly above has relayed that she can sometimes hear us, although only in the room directly above the studio. Once the change of use has been granted, I will be installing sound proofing measures into the ceiling to reduce this.”

She added that they are open outside of busy traffic times and only host classes of small sizes, so will have no impact on parking.

“The studio is very popular with university students, and a large proportion of my clients find the studio though my links with the university society.

“The property is located close to tram and bus routes which makes it easily accessible via public transport.”

The application is currently going through the council’s planning process but the studio will remain open in the meantime.

Ms Bibby plans to keep the studio open for around 10 to 15 hours a week, including evenings and weekends.

The public can comment on this application via the council’s planning portal.