I recently spent an afternoon at the Mecca Bingo in Portswood. I met members of staff and bingo players and had a go at calling out the numbers.
Bingo halls up and down the country have been closing, with the industry under huge pressure from double taxation and the effects of the smoking ban. Unlike other forms of gambling bingo suffers from an anomaly in the tax system whereby it must pay both gaming duty and VAT. Conservatives have pledged to abolish this double taxation and save bingo halls up and down the country from closure.
The Mecca Bingo Hall on Portswood Broadway is a fantastic old building. I found an interesting article on Portswood.info which tells its history.
It was be a disaster for local people if it were to close. With over 34,000 members in Southampton (including me!) it would have big detrimental impact on the community.