RESIDENTS are "horrified" by a hotel's plan to open a striptease and lap dancing club in New Cross.

An application by the White Hart Hotel, New Cross Road, New Cross, to open a strip club on the premises has prompted more than 100 objections and three petitions from residents against the plan. The police have also put in a letter of objection.

Many residents say they fear the proposal, which would see the club stay open till 3am, will lead to an increase in crime in the area.

In a letter of objection Ayana Sakey, of Deptford Broadway, Deptford, said: "I was so horrified to hear the White Hart is applying to become a lap dancing venue.

"That part of New Cross is already a frightening and unpleasant place to be after dark.

"How much worse is this going to be when there are inebriated, sexually-frustrated punters spilling out of a sleazy nightspot in the early hours of the morning?"

TV researcher Bridget Gregory, 24, of Arbuthnot Road, says the area is largely residential, with many families living there.

She told News Shopper: "The hotel is right in the heart of the community, with a chemist, doctor's surgery and schools nearby.

"A strip club doesn't promote a safe environment, so it's a terrible location for one."

A spokesman for regeneration scheme the New Cross New Deal for Communities says a strip club will be detrimental to the area's image and undermine work done by the scheme to regenerate the area.

However, a petition has been sent to the council supporting the plan.

White Hart owner Kenneth Linwood said: "The business was really struggling before and this is the only way I can survive.

"There's been a lot of comments about a strip club bringing trouble to the area but it's complete rubbish. There will be no access to children and there will be an over 21 door policy with strict security."

A decision on the application will be made by the council's licensing committee, which meets at Lewisham Town Hall in Catford from 6.30pm tomorrow. The meeting is open to the public.