Eyes down, looking for a full house! It’s an enduring and popular pass-time for all ages – take a look at Mecca Bingo in Blackpool – then and now.
About Mecca Bingo in Blackpool
The Rank Group operates Mecca Bingo in Blackpool, it’s one of their many hundreds of bingo clubs throughout the UK. They also operate Grosvenor Casinos and online gaming. ‘Top Rank’ was the name for it if you remember, back in the day.
Find it at: Talbot Road, Blackpool, FY1 3QX
It’s the home of great bingo games and slot machines. Plus live entertainment, tasty food and great value drinks, all wrapped up in one venue.
- There’s on-site parking, a licensed bar and cash machine.
- Mecca Bingo Blackpool is open from 10am every day
House! How Bingo Began
The Italian Lottery of 1530 is widely believed to be where the game of bingo originates from. It wasn’t called than back then and the name we know came some time later! After spreading to France it made its way to Britain in the 1700’s.
Origins of our well-known modern version aren’t clear but first appeared at carnivals and fairs in the 1920s. We have a chap called Edwin S. Lowe to thank for our modern bingo card design – he patented it in 1942.
It feels like bingo has been around forever but it wasn’t until 1961 that Mecca Bingo was established. Eric Morley came up with the idea and popularised it in the 1960’s. Also the founder of the Miss World Pageant, he rightly thought it was a good tactic to fill Mecca Leisure Groups many dance halls.
The Rank Organisation (now the owners of Mecca Bingo) was the other large operator of the time. Blackpool Odeon (now Funny Girls) was their largest UK cinema and also hosted Bingo Blackpool!
History of Mecca Bingo in Blackpool
By 1973, the former Rendezvous Cinema at 57 Bond Street had been converted to a full-time Mecca Bingo Club. The entrance to it was through a shop with the auditorium for 500 at the back.
Later to become Walkers Bingo and Social Club, by 2011 the auditorium had been demolished with the land being used as a car park. The front of the building is still there and is now an electrical shop.
From Mecca to Viva
On 2 September 1994 a new Woolworth’s opened at Blackpool seafront with a huge Mecca Bingo Club upstairs. That closed in around 2007, moving to its current purpose built premises at Talbot Road.
After a lot of hard work over just five weeks to convert the dilapidated space, Viva Blackpool opened there in August 2012.
On 30 March 2003 a 75 year old Blackpool widow scooped over half a million pounds there, on the National Mother’s Day jackpot. She won the National Game Prize of £500,000 plus a further Regional prize of £2119. And on top of that the Talbot Road Mecca Bingo club prize of £289!
But that wasn’t the only big jackpot to be cashed in at Mecca Bingo in Blackpool. Just 18 months later, on 19 December 2004, Helen Hooper won the £1/2 million game. She shared it with her friend, Jean Greenhill.
While you’re here…
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