It seems like every other country has the perception of the UK being filled with tea sipping, bingo playing posh people. While they may be wrong in some regards, it can’t be argued that we’re not a nation of bingo lovers. British people are absolutely mad for bingo, but where did this all begin?

A National Pastime

From the bingo games in churches to commercial games in commercial chains, the revolution around bingo has been fierce. Throughout the 1950s and beyond, it was a highly social experience to pop out to the bingo with your friends. The halls would have food, drink and anything else you could need to have a great time.

When the television set was first introduced in the UK, cinemas took a downturn in attendance. This led many of them to shut up shop, only to be replaced by a brand new bingo hall. This was a trend all over the country and many halls still exist in this refurbished state.

After the Second World War, the desire for bingo just exploded, with people having more free time. Women were reunited with their husbands and all they headed out for nights out in droves.

In the Modern Day

The love of bingo hasn’t gone anywhere, though it has moved online. After the Smoking Act came into play, bingo halls were not able to allow their visitors to smoke. While this may seem like a small aspect of the experience, it massively affected attendance in these halls.

When this occurred, many younger players turned to the online version of the game instead. Bingo sites boomed, with hundreds of them opening their doors to these new players. Sites like exist purely to help people pick the right site for them. There are so many out there that picking just one can be a bit of a daunting task.

The whole night out atmosphere has also come back to the bingo world, with clubs running their own bingo nights. They can be based on music or drinks, usually these will have a distinct student population. They’re pretty cheap and fun nights, with the game of bingo being more of a focus than drinking heavily.

Gay clubs and drag shows can also combine an element of bingo, with drag queen bingo a popular way to entertain visitors. This again gets younger, trendier people involved in the game, which helps to get them back in love with bingo all over again.

What’s Next for Bingo?

A lot of bingo halls are now trying to target younger players with a different vibe. They have snacks, drinks and a chilled out atmosphere that could have it taking over the local student union in terms of popularity.

Online bingo is continuing to grow too, with more sites continuing to pop up on a regular basis. There are still challenges to be faced by this industry, just like any other, but with the British love for bingo, we don’t think that this hobby will leave our shores anytime soon.