Police sever ties with firm over massages ad

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POLICE have cut ties with a Wigan company after a middle-aged massage therapist used its website to offer stressed-out officers a discount on a “full tantric experience.”

Staff Discounts UK, of Bridgeman Terrace, Wigan, included an advert from gran Jill Sullivan offering male cops from the Scottish Lothian and Borders force the chance to sign up for cut-price “sensual tantric massage” sessions.

The 55-year-old woman offered a £35 discount on the normal price of £240 for a 90-minute special massage.

Ms Sullivan, who operates from her home in Dalkeith, Scotland, even claimed on her website that she was now an official “massage therapist” for the force, as well as belonging to the police union, the Scottish Police Federation, which has been denied by police chiefs.

The Federation now plans to terminate its contract with Wigan-based Staff Discounts UK, which offers reduced prices on behalf of various firms to Federation members.

But today the boss of Staff Discounts UK hit back and said the incident had been “blown out of proportion.”

Andrew Beckett said: “We weren’t aware what was on the lady’s website. When we found out the services the lady was offering, we felt it better to give her a refund and have her adverts taken off our site. We also told her to take the messages about the police off her site.

“We’re disappointed that our contract with the Scottish Police Federation has now finished. This is the first police federation we have been involved in and we’ve learnt lessons from this. We hope that there is a possibility we can sit round the table in the future and resolve this.”

A Scottish Police Federation spokesman said: “We do not endorse any company or product but we did engage with Staff Discounts to arrange discounts with reputable companies for our members. However, we became aware of issues around the company. As a result, we have terminated our relationship with them when the contract finishes in April.”

Ms Sullivan, who works only part-time while caring for her parents, both of whom are in their 90s, said: “It was a mistake. Staff Discounts UK saw my website and contacted me to see if I wanted to sign up to advertise to the police through them.

“They told me I would probably end up with more clients than I could handle and I could pass on the rest of the work.

“Tantric massages are only a part of my work. I believed I could help injured officers with hot stone massages, deep tissue massages or aromatherapy.”