Shetland Islands’ First Escort Service Closes

The owner of the Shetland Islands' first escort service has closed the business saying there is not enough interest in the local community

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A small suburb for permanent oil workers has risen amid the crofts, Brae, Shetland Islands, Scotland

The Shetland Islands are situated off the coast of Scotland, 600 miles north of London, and are most famous for a breed of horse — the short, stocky, curiously adorable Shetland ponies. They are not, however, the first place one would think of when looking to find an escort service.

The Shetlands’ first escort service recently opened for business in the main port of Lerwick, much to the dismay of locals. According to the Shetland Times, the ‘Magnificent Shetland Escort’ was set up by a 46-year-old Brazilian woman from the Scottish mainland who calls herself Honey, and who was charnging£180 ($270) an hour. But the business has proved short lived: Honey has already decided to shut down her Shetlands operation, citing financial woes and a lack of public interest, writes the Times.

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The mother of two was not exactly welcomed with open arms by the Shetlands community. “Commercial sexual exploitation supports a culture that views women as objects who are more a sum of body parts than a whole being, and eroticizes men’s violence and their perceived right to buy whatever acts they have sexualized,” Karen McKelvie of Shetland’s Women’s Aid told the Shetland Times.

Honey responded to these complaints, writing in the Shetland Times that despite the stigma attached to working in the sex industry, she is “a very professional lady,” adding that she was a real business woman working with what belongs to her; “my body, my mind, my soul.”

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However, Honey soon realized that most Shetlands men would prefer to visit her in Aberdeen or even Norway as they fear being judged by locals, writes the Times. “They are worried about putting something in the back of their wives’ minds,” Honey reportedly said. Andrea Manson, a local councilor, agrees that given the size of the islands everyone would be keeping an eye out for her. “She’s going to be spotted right away,” said Manson.

Prostitution is not against the law in Scotland, but “loitering or soliciting for sex in public” is frowned upon and considered antisocial behavior, says the Shetland Times. Nevertheless, Honey is determined to keep running her business from mainland Scotland. “If my clients want to pay me to come over, I will still come over,” she explained.

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