A general election is looming once again: the voting system that the media have dubbed the ‘Brexit Election.’ Each political party has shown its true colours with a do or die stance on Brexit, and this means a vote for the Conservatives is a vote to leave the EU. A vote for the Liberal Democrats is a vote to remain in the EU and a vote for the Labour Party is a vote for a ‘People’s Vote,’ aka a second referendum.
Amidst the manifestos and false promises, a bingo hall has found itself embroiled in a rather strange row between two political parties; the Conservatives at one end of Twitter and the Labour Party at the other.
Rank-owned Mecca Bingo in Eltham (London) says it is ‘determined’ to continue offering bingo games to the public despite being speculation growing around the future of the building in which it occupies. According to Mecca, bingo will always be available from this location as it is one of the best bingo halls in the UK, but the Tory party (Conservatives), have a very different viewpoint – they’re to close!
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Clive Efford, the Labour MP for Eltham took to Twitter on Sunday evening to bash unnamed individuals who were spreading rumours on the fate of the bingo hall. After the Tweet was sent, it was revealed that his Conservative opponent, Louie French was and still is an advocate for the closure of the bingo hall to make way for apartments.
Greenwich Council included the Mecca Bingo hall as part of its planning strategy in the summer, sighting the building for possible redevelopment, the council stated the building as: “(an)underused site on the edge of Eltham town centre, currently in use by Mecca Bingo. Redevelopment presents an opportunity to enhance the townscape while making more efficient use of this accessible edge of town centre site.”
Efford tweeted: “I have spoken to Rank, which owns Mecca Bingo. They’ve told me the Eltham Bingo is one of their most popular clubs and it is not closing. Those claiming that it is being closed are acting irresponsibly and should show more care for the employees people who enjoy the bingo.”
But according to local Conservative councillors, Rank had been informed last week of the proposals and redevelopment and that there was to be an exhibition next year on the planned apartments. But who should we believe?
John Dyson, the national operations director for Mecca, told online news this week: “Mecca Eltham is an important club for us and the team is a key part of the local community. We are aware of the speculation, but we have a great team of colleagues and we are determined to carry on delivering great bingo to our fantastic customers in Eltham.”
The building is owned by Bellflower Group, a company based on the British Virgin Islands who acquired the property back in January 2017 for the grand sum of £5million. Mecca Bingo has a lease on the building right up until September 2021.