London – Gala Bingo East Ham – Barking Road

This Club Is Closed Or Demolished
  • Photograph by: Ewan Munro - Exterior of the now closed London, East Ham Gala Bingo - Barking Road

Date of closure: 13 November 2014

Address (for reference only):

Gala Bingo
Barking Road
East Ham
London
E6 1LB

As you can see from the image below, this is a large venue, situated in what used to be the old Granada Theatre. With seating for 2,468, it was a huge venue that was home to stage performances as well as films. During the war it was hit in a bombing raid, although damage wasn’t too bad. Like many other cinemas it was purchased by Granada (early 1965), who owned it until its closure in 1974. They converted it for bingo and reopened it, but Gala ran the show since 1991, until closing in 2014. The chain did not give a specific reason for the closure, although it did coincide with a period where owners Coral were considering selling their clubs prior to a stock market flotation.

If you have any further details that may assist us, and you would like to share them with our readers, we would love to hear from you. If you let us know what you know, we will put the details online with your name credited (if you wish, or we can credit the article as anonymous). You will be doing a service to the bingo community and posterity by helping us record details of all Britain’s bingo clubs and halls. Thank you.

By Gareth Whieldon (November 2014)

Update

As of July 2017 the venue has been transformed into a massive three storey ‘play area’. Inside the building is a series of activities that would keep the most active fun-seeker busy for at least a day. It has the UK’s first indoor caving experience which consists of an indoor pothole,e that stretches 100m. For those who like their action in the air, their are 12 climbing walls, as well as a massive trampoline facility. There’s also an assault course in the style of TV’s Ninja Warrior, a laser maze and more.

Although it’s sad that bingo has not returned, at least the venue still serves as a community resource, and quite obviously a healthier one. Owners Flip Out have done their best to retain the original interior features so that the building still reflects the Art Deco theme. At least it hasn’t been turned into flats…

By Gareth Whieldon (July 2017)

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