Controversial Edinburgh sex shop owner left £1.6m fortune in his will

He faced objections and protests to his sex shop plans including opposition from police.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 29th October 2019, 12:26 pm
Updated Tuesday, 29th October 2019, 12:32 pm

A controversial businessman who ran a string of sex shops in Edinburgh left a £1.6 million fortune in his will.

Vincent Delicato operated X-rated shops in the capital and regularly clashed with protesters and council bosses.

His premises sold sex toys and adult material and were among the first official sex shops in Scotland.

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Vincent Delicato operated X-rated shops in the capital and regularly clashed with protesters and council bosses.

Mr Delicato, of South Queensferry, died aged 69 in 2016.

His published will has revealed he amassed an estate valued at £1,592,299.

His wealth included a £600,000 property and almost £1 million in cash held in bank and company accounts.

He also had property and cash valued at £50,000 held in Italy and £2,500 in personal possessions.

Inside one of the shops.

He ordered his estate be passed to his family including his wife and two children.

Mr Delicato's premises included Leather and Lace in Edinburgh's Drummond Street.

In 2003 he threatened to use European human rights law to force planners to allow him to open an outlet in Edinburgh.

He said he was considering going to the European courts after councillors blocked his plans to run a sex shop in Gorgie Road.

He faced objections and protests for the plans including opposition from police who raised concerns.

Interviewed at the time Mr Delicato defended his business and vowed to continue operating.

He said: "When I started out in this business, the official line was that there were no sex shops in Scotland. Unofficially, it was another matter.

"I'd been in business in my home city of Edinburgh since I was 17, and all of my businesses since then have been centred here.

"I started off in a fish-and-chip shop, and went into the video business in my thirties. Six years ago, I opened my first sex shop. At that time, it was a straightforward business decision.

"I had a video store with an empty basement which didn't make any sense. It was a challenge to do this, to find something new on the market and shake Edinburgh up a bit.

"I found that the nature of the shop wasn't a problem for banks. They don't really care as long as you have the financial security.

"Edinburgh itself was another matter. There was a huge outcry. There is a mosque nearby, and some people claimed they would burn my shop down if I started selling sex toys and pornography."

He added: "This is an adult-only shop. I can only allow over-18s in. There are strict rules and I have to adhere to them, even the ones that don't make any sense. If someone came in here with a newborn baby, I'd have to ask him or her to leave, because that's what the licence states.

"I know that people do raise objections and say that the type of thing I sell is a danger, but that's ridiculous in my view."

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