Back in the heyday of British bingo during the 1960s, it wasn’t uncommon to see heaving halls full of people chatting, drinking and hoping to win big. From local community centres dressed up for the purpose to dedicated bingo halls constructed to meet the demand, Britain simply couldn’t get enough of bingo.
In the intervening half a century or so, however, dedicated bingo halls – and even bingo nights – have been on the decline in much of the UK. Other hobbies have taken over as the community aspect of bingo became side-lined.
Of course, there remain active bingo halls in England, but it’s Glasgow where you’ll find bingo alive and kicking. Yes, our nearest city is home to bingo’s biggest fans, many of whom play in the UK’s biggest bingo hall – still heaving even today. The reason? Glasgow’s communities have stuck together over the century, engraining bingo into the local psyche.
More than that though, Glasgow and – of course – Paisley have had its modern bingo obsession fuelled by one thing – online bingo games, often with games that start from just 5p.
You’ll have seen the adverts on TV for the countless online bingo services that have popped up and, for a new generation of bingo players, this is their first point of contact with the game. But how has technology in online bingo driven players towards real bingo halls in Glasgow, Paisley and beyond? Join us as we take a look.
Live Video Feeds
Ultra-fast broadband across much of Scotland has meant that today, streaming high-quality video from sources like Netflix, YouTube and Twitch is commonplace. It’s also meant that online bingo providers have been able to incorporate real bingo hosts and games into their services.
Rather than offering simplistic cartoony graphics, these live video bingo games offer just a taste of the thrill of a live bingo hall. With a few games under their belt, players have felt more comfortable going to a physical bingo hall and tasting the atmosphere for themselves.
An often-underappreciated aspect of bingo’s popularity is the community aspect of it. It’s a fun, communal activity where you can make new friends, enjoy a chat and have a laugh with strangers.
Chatrooms, introduced to online bingo in recent years, have gone some way to recreating that experience – albeit not to the extent that you experience in a crowded bingo hall. That little taste of the community spirit of bingo has been enough to encourage players to visit physical bingo halls too.
Social Media Connectivity
Bingo is, ultimately, a social game. Of course, you can play it happily alone, but there’s nothing quite like playing with friends and family.
By linking social media accounts to bingo accounts, increasingly online bingo players are playing along with friends in the very same game. The leap from that to meeting up on a Friday night to play in their local bingo hall? Well, it’s not a big one at all.
Do you still play bingo at your local hall? Let us know on social media!