Swing when you're winning.
Peter Stringfellow is England's
most conspicuous playboy superstar. His nightclub is a byword
for glamour and sexuality. But do we love him for it? Sid
or hate him, and most of you out there seem to hate him,
Peter Stringfellow, has been enjoying a unique role in our
society, that of a pariah. At times, he's known either as
Britain's best-loved playboy or just simply as 'Mr Notorious'.
Whether you've lusted after his little black book, being
the owner of a successful nightclub or being surrounded
by a Jiggle of Table Dancers (any advances on a collective
name?), it's time to put the green god of Envy away.
He may not be Yorkshire's most successful -I believe that
crown rests with his contemporary, Dave Allen, a multimillionaire
who owns, amongst many things, several casinos, the Owlerton
Dog Track and is the power base behind the Owls. However,
Peter Stringfellow is known the world over, and is still
a 'Sheffield Lad made Good'. It's just that he chose . .
. a more colourful route; that of merchant navy then prison
(one spell of 6 weeks when he was 20) through to club entrepreneur.
So stop that infernal knocking.
latest wave of success is due to his sharp business
acumen, when during one of his frequent trips to New York,
he stumbled upon the phenomena that is Table Dancing. He
immediately set to work to bring it to Blighty. At this
point, one should say that Westminster Council is not the
most liberal of councils, in fact downright prudery is nearer
the mark. So it was no easy thing to persuade them to provide
the necessary licence.
secured that coup, he added table dancing to his club repertoire
in 1995. It became his Cabaret
of Angels. Now, several years later, the whole country
is dancing to the same tune. Today his club is not alone,
and he has formidable competition from the large US Group
Spearmint Rhino, which has opened several clubs around London.
However, he always manages to keep abreast of the competition.
One might even assume that his name alone draws in the crowds.
Recently, he took part in a radio show entitled 'Notoriety'
on London Live. In which he talked frankly about his steady
life with his glamorous girlfriend of 3 years standing,
his life style of clubs and restaurants (has anyone ever
seen him in the daylight?) and his earnest interest in charities,
most notably that of the Rainbow Trust Charity.
is Notoriety a thing of the past?
Well, it would appear so as the tabloids are too bored to
pick fault with him, so you won't find any sordid little
stories. Let's face it, the tabloids hunt for hypocrisy
with a rare kind of relish, and Peter Stringfellow is no
hypocrite - 'What you see is what you get'.
Is the oldest swinger in town slowing down? Hardly.
2001 was a very active year. Firstly, there was the publication
of his biography 'King of Clubs' by Fiona Lafferty. Which
was best described as a frank look at the underbelly of
the glitz, glamour and guns in the world of night clubs.
And is truly a riveting read.
In addition, he launched his own all-girl pop act 'Horny
Culture', who were selected from his 'Joy'. Their arrival
on the music scene heralded much amusement. However, with
a record contract and a few releases, they may still leave
egg on the faces of the Doubting Thomas'. Peter said at
the time, "There's no use pretending that I chose them for
anything other than that they are all beautiful, gorgeous
and talented". Now isn't that the requisite for all 'boy/girl'
Recently, there has been talk of an overseas venture,
that of a sister 'Cabaret of Angels' club in Paris - Vive
la Difference! Although his earlier American ventures came
a cropper, this one seems more atune to him. And don't forget
there's always the possibility of a stock market flotation,
to aid expansion. Maybe one day you can own a share in the
he's not busy, he does like a good challenge; whether it's
taking part either in the BBC's comedy news programme 'Have
I Got News For You' (and being the butt of ripostes thrice
over from Paul Merton), or in accepting invitations from
University Debating societies (which surely must confuse
the hell out of the PC brigade).
Lastly, we werenot entirely surprised that Peter Stringfellow
failed to appear in the recent BBC list of 'Greatest Britains'.
But like Shackleton, he doesn't give in easily. He's not
ready for those comfy carpet slippers just yet.