Date of closure: TBC
Address (for reference only):
Originally opened as the Rialto Theatre in 1928, a part of the Orr Circuit. Originally a 1000+ seater venue, its life as a cinema ended in 1940 when it was destroyed by German bombers. The adjoining Rialto Casion Ballroom survived, and operated until 1960, when this part of the complex became a bingo club. In 1980 it became a Granada Bingo Club, before becoming an independent club that operated until around 2009.
The club was then reopened after restoration in 2012. They claimed at the time to be the first UK club to be 100% electronic bingo. We know this version of the club was open in 2013 when Michal Hess visited as part of our Bingo and Social Club Five Years Later commission. The bingo once again closed at some point after Michael’s visit, the venue reopening as a live venue which it continues to be to the current time.
Other Lost Halls In The Area
Michael Hess: Club Rialto, Coventry
Taken as a part of the Playing Bingo commission of Michael Hess to shoot a follow-up to his book, Bingo and Social Club. Find out more about the project here.
The Coventry Rialto is a traditional bingo hall located in what once used to be a cinema. The top image shows an engraved glass door, many independent bingo halls struggle to keep afloat, so it’s nice to see one that can afford such embellishments to the venue. The other photographs below show that you can ‘teach an old dog new tricks’, as players of all ages are using palm devices. This may have been one of the major changes since Michael Hess’ last visit to the club, and another signal that the club is doing well. Hopefully the use of technology like this will make the club more ‘youth friendly’, and get a new generation of players into the club.
Photographs copyright Michael Hess April 2013. They cannot be reproduced without the permission of PlayingBingo.co.uk.