Bingo used to be called ‘beano’. New York toy manufacturer, Edwin S. Lowe, invented ‘beano’, a toy for children, where numbers were covered using beans. Allegedly, when he was playing an early version of the game with his family, someone got so excited when they won that they shouted ‘bingo’ in error and the name stuck!
Bingo is older than you think Bingo’s origins are believed to date from 1530, in Italy, where it began life as a lottery called ‘Il Gioco del Lotto d’Italia’. From there you can trace its path roughly as a favourite of the French aristocracy, where it was known as ‘Le Lotto’, before finally arriving on British shores, via America.
The Biggest Bingo Wins John Orchard won £5.9 million in 2012 (online – Butlers Bingo) Anne Marie Farrar won £3.4 million in 2015 (online – Iceland Bingo) Soraya Lowell won £1,1 million in 2008 (in club – the National Bingo Game)
Bingo’s bigger than football In the UK, every year more money is spent on bingo tickets than on all footballing events combined.
Bingo remains one of the UK’s most popular leisure activities Eight per cent of the UK population play bingo – 10% of all women and 5% of all men, with over 3 million people playing regularly in the UK (at least twice a week)
Bingo’s not just for grannies Many people think that bingo’s mainly played by older adults, but they’re wrong! In fact, over one third of online bingo players actually fall within the 25-34 age bracket, with eh average age of land based players bingo a little higher at
Take Margaret to bingo Margaret is the most common winner’s name, statistically: so if you are called Margaret you’re more likely to win than anyone else.
Bingo Boosts the Brain Playing bingo can keep the mind in trim researchers have found at Southampton University. Similar studies at Harvard University showed social activities, such as playing games like bingo are just as important and good for your health as physical exercise.
Get your heart racing When you are one number off calling bingo!, your heart beats faster than if you were on The Big One – the roller coaster at Blackpool Pleasure Beach.
We Run The World (Girls) Exactly as Beyonce put it in her hit single, the bingo world is female space with 70% of customers being women: men are also allowed to play.
Get out of the house to shout HOUSE! The most common reasons for playing bingo are because it’s fun, exciting and offers the chance to meet fiends and socialise.
Celebs love bingo! Catherine Zeta Jones can thank bingo for her career after her dad won enough to afford to send her to theatre school; Robbie Williams has been known to drop into his local club and played bingo with Daryl Hannah in his music video for Feel. Other celebrity fans include: Denise Van Outen, Scott Mills, not to mention her majesty the Queen who apparently chooses to call ‘Palace’ rather than ‘house’! Bingo is also played by Kylie, Cher Lloyd, Elle MacPherson and Take That.
A great start to your career Bingo offers lots of different types of jobs, in club and online, with many offering flexibility in relation to location and hours: no shortage of celebrities got their start in bingo calling including Simon from boy band Blue, East Ender’s Shane Richie, Russell Crowe, Kian from West Life and Chris Tarrant.
Different numbers Bingo can be played using 90, 85, 75, 50 numbers or even less, with the average bingo game lasting between 3 and 6 minutes to complete.
A great night out, or in. The average club player spends £15-£20 on a bingo session, excluding food and drink or side games