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Unfair dismissal: stripper claims Stringfellows exploits lapdancers

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A former Stringfellows stripper who earned £200,000 a year at the Covent Garden club appeared before an employment tribunal yesterday to claim unfair dismissal.

Nadine Quashie, 28, said she was officially self-employed - which would bar a claim for unfair dismissal - but a series of "petty" rules imposed by club boss Peter Stringfellow effectively made her an employee.

A few of the rules cited by Ms Quashie include:

  • a requirement to dance naked without pay once an hour on the hour when a special song played, or pay a £50 fine
  • limits on what can be charged for lapdances and "hosting"
  • threats to sack dancers who take cash gifts from punters (NB. only pre-paid vouchers known as "heavenly money" was permitted)
  • threats of fines for failing to attend meetings with Mr Stringfellow or his deputy, or breaching the club's dress code ("Mr Stringfellow didn't like too much bling," said Ms Quashie)
  • compulsory £15 "styling and make-up" charges
  • a "general" fee of £65
  • payment to the club of 25 per cent of earnings over £300

Ms Quashie told the tribunal she regularly took home £1,200 a night working at the club, until she was dismissed over a drug allegation.

Stringfellows' lawyer Caspar Glyn accused Ms Quashie of being "a tax fraudster" and said her case was based on "lots of little lies".

He added that she chose to work at the club because the rewards were "enormous".

Mr Glyn said: "You worked in the most lucrative gentlemen's club in London because of the standard of clientele."

The hearing continues.

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