This week a man denied charges of sexually assaulting two women when he appeared in court. The forty five year old male is accused of assaulting both of the women on the same day in July at Nethergate, Dundee.
Bingo Halls are not usually known as being places where women are at risk, but the two women involved have said that the man touched them on the buttocks in the hall, and when you think about it, it is probably the last thing on anyone’s mind as they sit down to enjoy a game of bingo.
The ladies have claimed that the accused man approached them whilst they were in the hall that he sat at the same table as one of them. It is a well-known fact that this does occur as some tables are actually considered ‘lucky’ and you can see quite a few players sitting about the same table. Apparently the accused man failed to talk to the ladies and it is said that he instead groped them, although he has denied the charges in Dundee Sheriff’s Court.
The staff of Mecca Bingo have declined to comment on the case saying that it is a police matter and not their place to offer and comment. Thankfully this type of behavior is rare in bingo halls, which will come as a big relief to many.
The accused man’s trial date has been set for the fourth of December when he will stand trial for the assault of the two women.
The Mecca, Nethergate, is a quite a large hall and boasts 15.000 active members on its books. Operating since 1997 it is a very popular bingo hall and up till now there have never been any reports such as this in their history.
Are Bingo Pubs a Possibility?
Now the simple fact is that the room is divided when it comes to the concept of a bingo pub with some thinking that the idea is great whilst to others it is their worst nightmare! Well one UK pub operator, Greene King, has actually applied for a gambling license, had the application turned down, and is now appealing the decision. If Green King turn out to be successful, this may lead to a wave of bingo pubs calling out numbers, before time, across Britain.
Greene King operates in excess of a 1.000 public houses across the UK and is commonly known, many locals are struggling to stay afloat, Greene King already offers ‘pub bingo ‘ games in a large number of their houses although these games are offered under the ‘exempt gaming’ provisions, which have very strict limits attached on prizes and the cost of tickets.
If Greene King is awarded a license from the UK Gambling Commission, these bingo games will become greater events, with bigger cash prizes and even linked games across all Greene King pubs, possibly with other nationwide linked games, such as those found at Castle Bingo and Mecca Bingo.
It is thought that the UK Gambling Commission turned down Greene King’s application over concerns about the potential development of commercial bingo in pubs as a whole, and industry experts explained that if Greene King was granted a gambling license, the possibility of hundreds or even thousands of other pubs would attempt to follow their lead and apply for gambling licenses. In response Greene King has said that there is not enough evidence to support the Commissions claims, taking its case to an appeal tribunal, which many experts believe will be upheld.
The operators of our beloved land-based bingo halls are already struggling to survive, surely if pubs began to offer big cash prizes would be the death of them?
*A decision about Greene King’s appeal is due early December.