Her bad and traumatic experiences with men in nightclubs urged her to create this space.
Women view the world through a lens of caution and preventing danger. They live in a patriarchal society where women being harassed and attacked make headlines every single day. In these times, going out at night seems like a big risk but this one woman is trying to change the narrative. Teddy Edwardes created LICK, a nightclub that only allows exclusive entry to women and is also inclusive of the LGBTQIA+ community. By leaving men out of this equation, she aimed to create a safe space for women to have fun and relax without worrying about their safety.
She share her experience on TikTok, where it quickly went viral, garnering over 3.6 million views. Teddy spoke to Buzzfeed about her inspiration after the creation of this nightclub. She said, "I started LICK because I just had enough of going to straight clubs and every single time having some sort of issue with men." She spoke about her last straw in dealing with men in nightclubs. She went to a friend's album launch and as soon as she entered, a man "grabbed" her hair and pulled her all the way across to the bar. He wanted to buy her a drink and after this unfortunate experience, Teddy decided she was done with these nightclubs.
LICK has evolved into a significant feature in the London club scene, selling out 2,000 tickets every time it throws an event. It's also been introduced in ten more places, and Teddy says they frequently receive notes from participants about how LICK has impacted their life. It has helped them in "feeling safe, representation, finding partners, new friends," and many more things.
However, Teddy had to jump through several hurdles to reach here. She explained, "For the first three years, I barely made a penny. I did it out of pure passion. My partner at the time told me I’d never make any money from it and I should get a normal job in a café." She said that no venues would want to work with them and some even canceled last minute and banned her stating that she brings the "wrong crowd" into the area. She added, "It was £2 entry and I’d have to just hope on the night that people would come. They always did, and even though the maximum capacity was 50 people, it was the BEST night of our lives every single Tuesday."
Teddy believes that the success of LICK shows a lot about the nightclub experience for women and queer folks in her area. She said, "Everyone is sick of how men behave on nights out at this point, and the gay bars are no better either…most queer women I know have been questioned or denied entry to most gay bars in London." Teddy believes that because of this queer women are often left with no options for any social engagements in the city.
Teddy told the outlet that she feels more places like LICK should exist, but only if they are created with the proper motives. She said that even though now more exclusive places for queer women are coming up if they do it for money it is not beneficial. "Your most important priority needs to be the welfare and comfort of the people you are now responsible for, and who are relying on you for some level of safety," she added.