Orkney Islands Council
Working together for a better Orkney

Sex Shop Licence

Sex shops in Orkney require a licence from the Council under section 45 of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982.

A sex shop is any premises, vehicle, vessel or stall used for a business which consists to a significant degree of selling, hiring, exchanging, lending, displaying or demonstrating sex articles.

A sex article is:

  • Anything intended for use in connection with or for the purpose of stimulating or encouraging sexual activity or acts of force or restraint which are associated with sexual activity.
  • Any article containing or embodying matter to be read or looked at or anything intended to be used, either alone or as one of a set, for the reproduction or manufacture of any such article.
  • Any recording of vision or sound which:
    • Is concerned primarily with the portrayal of, or primarily deals with or relates to, or is intended to stimulate or encourage sexual activity or acts of force or restraint which are associated with sexual activity.
    • Is concerned primarily with the portrayal of, or primarily deals with or relates to, genital organs, or urinary or excretory functions.

Articles which are manufactured for use primarily for the purposes of birth control or which primarily relate to birth control are exempted from the licensing requirements.

On this page is all the information you will require to apply for a sex shop licence.

If you require further information about this topic please contact the Licensing Team, Legal Services, on telephone: 01856873535 extensions 2229 or 2232 or via email.

If you would like to see someone in person to discuss a licensing matter please contact the Licensing Team to make an appointment.

Data Protection Information - Civic and Miscellaneous Licensing

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into force on 25 May 2018.

Application forms and guidance issued by Orkney Islands Council (the Council) in relation to civic and miscellaneous licences will be updated.

In the meantime, an information sheet accompanies documentation provided to applicants and is published in the Related Downloads section on this page.

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