City Sauna, the Sheffield ‘massage parlour’ (house of ill fame) run by mother and daughter pairing Kath, 53, and Jenni, 28, reopens its doors to a Channel 4 camera crew and paints a picture of workaday mundaneness rather than a seedy portrait of the sex industry.
It’s a couple of years since the crew’s first visit to the massage parlour in the Attercliffe area of the city, and business is booming. Manager Kath has grand plans for expansion – including a mobile brothel called City on Tour, though, whether or not this would fall foul of kerb-crawling laws is never explored.
City Sauna’s credentials are impeccable – it is the only licensed massage parlour on the city’s ‘golden mile of sex’, which might lead to questions about Sheffield City Council’s interpretation of the law – even if it does ensure that women have a safe-ish environment in which to work rather than being out on the street.
If you’re tuning in hoping to see salacious goings on, you’ll be disappointed. This shows the often-mundane life of UK sex workers and their pragmatic attitude to client requests. We get insight from the working girls and even the bordello’s regular punters are happy to chip in with their views on the value of the services offered. All the while, Kath manages builders who are giving City Sauna a makeover and scours Sheffield for new premises, so she can achieve her dream of opening City 2? If that wasn’t enough of a headache, there’s damp in the gentleman’s lounge and a customer with a custard fetish. What could possibly go wrong? Welcome back to A Very British Brothel. Let’s hope everything pans out for Kath and there are happy endings all round.
A Very British Brothel Wednesday 10.00pm on Channel 4.