A night to remember on 14th November
Saturday 14th November marks 53 years of bingo at the Streatham Hill Theatre. To celebrate, the club is holding a party with Free for All bingo session, complete with bubbly and red carpet reception, gifts, and special guest performances. In honour of the theatre's opening in 1929, the club will fuse Las Vegas style casino chic with a retro London feel, and a few old school bingo surprises to delight new and regular members alike.
Join us on the red carpet from 6pm, where you can have your photograph taken in the beautiful grand entrance hall. Take a spin on the classic roulette wheel while sipping a dirty martini as you wait for your bingo session to begin, followed by special guest entertainment from 10pm.
Bingo will begin promptly at 7:30pm, with over £2000 of prize money on offer for the night, including a top prize of £500 cash to a single winner. Membership is free and can be completed on the night, but please be aware that guests that appear under 25 will be asked for photo ID before being allowed entry.
A truly grand experience for One Night Only in the magnificent surroundings of the old Streatham Hill Theatre to celebrate the history of bingo in Streatham.
An iconic, Grade II listed building since 1994, Streatham Hill Theatre survived bombing during WW2, and retains many of its original features, including the stunning entrance hall, complete with crystal chandelier and ornate ceiling.
Following the changes to the 2005 Gambling Act and the introduction of the smoking ban in England, the bingo industry suffered, with clubs throughout South London forced to close due to dwindling attendances and lack of investment. It was fully expected that Streatham would suffer the same fate until the acquisition by Praesepe PLC under the name of Beacon Bingo in 2009 secured a short term future at least. They retained the aesthetic charm of the building while they invested heavily behind the scenes in structural work and electrical updating.
Despite running at a loss for several years, the club remains operational, standing stubbornly in the spirit of the building, despite the constant spectre of closure that plagues so many other similar businesses. Just one look southbound on the A23 shows the potential fate awaiting the old theatre as Megabowl is demolished, brick by brick, to be replaced by the tide of progress.
Beacon Bingo has invited in the wider community, and actively seeks to take part in local events, hosting Art & Theatre shows during the Streatham Festival over the last few years. Last month saw Bela Lugosi return to draw a crowd to the Theatre, albeit on screen as the sinister Count Dracula during Streatham Free Film Festival.
Last year the club offered unprecedented access to hidden areas of the building with the Streatham Theatre Company’s Halloween Tours. By popular demand, they return on October 30th & 31st , with a focus on occult author Dennis Wheatley’s “The Devil Rides Back” with exclusive access to areas which have not been seen by the public for decades.
It is a testament to the members and team at the club to continue and thrive, with the will to preserve the building and offer a “home away from home” to the 1200 members that visit every week. Where once stood a crowd of bingo halls in the south, few remain, and none with the charm or history of this incredible building. Please come and celebrate with us on this unforgettable night.
By: Craig White