Mecca Bingo Kilburn, Kilburn High Road, London - Lost Bingo Halls
Club Closed: 19th August 2007
195-199 Kilburn High Road
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Mecca Bingo Kilburn, Kilburn High Road Background And History
Mecca Bingo's Kilburn Club called time in 2007, a bad time for Mecca, and other bingo club operators, both the independents and the big players. Luckily, there is such architectural significance in the structure, including a 130 feet tower, that the building itself should remain in good hands for many years to come. The building started out life as a cinema in 1937, and it was absolutely huge. With a capacity of over four thousand, the Gaumont State Theatre was the largest cinema ever built in England and the third largest in the United Kingdom. It was opened with a live radio broadcast that ran for 5 days, and after this it started showing feature films.
It was one of the best equipped theatres in the country with twenty dressing rooms, which must have been a real luxury for its visiting performers. Whereas many theatres had an adjoining cafe, the Gaumont had its own 400 seater restaurant. The building's exterior is in part homage to the Empire State Building which was at the time the biggest building in the world, and also all things American were in vogue, particularly as most of the movies shown would have been made in America.
With the onset of World War Two came the first of changes to affect the theatre, including brief closure, and part-time opening during the early war years. The cinema remained popular for several years, and was frequented by royalty who came to see ballets being performed. In 1957 the space underneath the cinema was converted into a dance studio, and was on of many changes that would be made to the interior structure over the following years.
Top Rank, who later became Mecca Bingo operated in part of the building until its closure. The building has since been bought by a church, which is a pattern that is emerging throughout the UK as many bingo operations fall by the wayside. It has now been reopened as a functioning church, and although bingo has gone, at least the building remains as a reminder of good times past.
By Gareth Whieldon (July 2010)
Photographs Of The Mecca Bingo Kilburn, Kilburn High Road
If you have any photos from this lost hall, be it of its interior, the staff, special events, parties, customers and more; and you'd like to share them here, please contact us to arrange adding them to the site.
More photos of the Mecca Bingo, Kilburn High Road - click here.
Your Comments And Memories Of The Kilburn High Road Mecca Bingo
Were you connected to the Mecca Bingo Kilburn High Road, Kilburn? Be it as a staff member or customer, we'd love to hear about this club when it was open - send your comments and memories about the staff, the members, the events and general atmosphere of this lost bingo club; to keep here for posterity's sake.
I saw Jethro Tull play there on a Sunday afternoon in 1971!
By Lars (March 2014)
Listed II*, address is 195-199, Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 7HY.
By D. Keeling (January 2017)
Other Clubs In The Area
Listed below are a couple of clubs in the area as an alternative to the Mecca Bingo Kilburn.
- Camden Town Mecca Bingo, Arlington Road, London
- Cricklewood Beacon Bingo, Cricklewood Broadway, London
- Elephant And Castle Palace Bingo, Elephant And Castle Shopping Centre London
We do try to verify the closure of all clubs featured in this section, which is not always possible. If we've added a club to the lost halls section that isn't closed, please accept our apologies and contact us asap so we can rectify our mistake.
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