Last week's announcement by Prime Minister Boris Johnson that the United Kingdom was to enter phase 3 of the lockdown restrictions meant hospitality venues such as cinemas and bingo halls would reopen on July 4th.
The news was greeted with obvious delight by bingo fans. Since lockdown began in March, bingo halls up and down the country have remained closed. Bingo fans had to endure the sight of bookmakers opening on June 15th, but still no announcement on when bingo halls would reopen. Although the UK Bingo Community has reacted to the Coronavirus marvellously with games of street bingo, zoom bingo and isolation bingo, the reopening of bingo halls has been eagerly anticipated.
Frustratingly, restrictions put in place by the Government has meant only a partial reopening of bingo clubs on July 4th.
Whilst most club operators have still not declared which clubs will reopen, Mecca Bingo have issued a list of clubs that will reopen.
In total, 36 Mecca Bingo clubs in England will be opening their doors to customers on July 4th. The remaining clubs will have a phased reopening from the middle of July onwards. Mecca confirmed they are still awaiting official guidance from the Scottish and Welsh Governments as to when the Mecca Bingo clubs can open there.
Mecca Bingo clubs reopening on 4th July:
· Acocks Green
· Blackpool Talbot Road
· Bolton Moor Lane
· Brierley Hill
· Eltham Hill
· Hull Clough Road
· Knotty Ash
· Leeds Cross Gates Road
· Leeds Mayfair
· Leicester Freemans Park
· Luton Skimpot Road
· Norwich Aylsham Road
· Nottingham Beeston
· Sheffield Flat Street
· St Helens
· Stockton Chandlers Wharf
· Wood Green
When the 36 bingo halls will reopen, there will be a number of restrictions in place. All attendees will need to clean their hands with hand sanitiser stations. There will be social distancing in place and customers can choose to both pay and play using contactless devices. There will however still be the option to use cash if preferred. Food and drink can be ordered by mobile phone or the MAX screens as per normal.
A big change will be that the opening hours will be extended in most clubs to accommodate the new ‘Popingo’ format. This allows customers to literally pop in and play for an hour, and have some fun with the new entertainment which includes a regular quiz night.
New ‘Mecca Cares’ sessions will be introduced earlier in the day. These have been created for those who may be a bit apprehensive about returning to ‘normal', after four months of lockdown.
The number of customers will also be reduced in these sessions. This is to ensure everybody is comfortable in their surroundings, enjoying a free cup of coffee laid on by the Mecca Bingo team.
Jonathon Swaine, Managing Director of Retail at Mecca Bingo, said:
“We want to reassure the Mecca Bingo community that we are working together to take every precaution necessary to create a safe environment in which to play the nation’s favourite game.
“We’re also investing in new entertainment formats in our clubs, to give everyone even better experiences. We are excited to reopen our doors, welcome back our communities and hear ‘House’ called once again.”
Mecca to Announce Summer Dates
Such is the confidence of Mecca Bingo of lockdown continuing to be eased, the bingo giant will soon announce a schedule of in-club events to be held throughout the summer and Autumn 2020.
The BingoDaily team shall keep you up-to-date on bingo news as and when it happens. In the meantime, can't wait until July 4th? check out the Mecca Bingo offer and other offers on our best bingo sites list.
Ben has been an massive bingo enthusiast and fan since playing at the seaside as a kid. Dedicated to bringing you the latest and best bingo news from the UK