`

Top bingo caller comes out of retirement for hospice fundraiser

Former Mecca Bingo staff and customers are reuniting to hold a bingo night at the Armstrong Hall to raise cash for St Clares Hospice'From left Eddie Proud, Alison Eglintine and former Mecca Bingo caller Blake Robson
Former Mecca Bingo staff and customers are reuniting to hold a bingo night at the Armstrong Hall to raise cash for St Clares Hospice'From left Eddie Proud, Alison Eglintine and former Mecca Bingo caller Blake Robson

An award-winning bingo caller is coming out of retirement to help boost the coffers of a South Tyneside hospice.

Blake Robson was a familiar face and voice at the Mecca Bingo in Dean Road, South Shields.

Mecca Bingo, Dean Road, South Shields

Mecca Bingo, Dean Road, South Shields

The venue closed last September, leaving bingo fans looking for an alternative place to go to play.

Now, to help St Clare’s Hospice, Blake has rallied some of Mecca’s former staff to come together to host a bingo night.

The event will take place at the Armstrong Hall in Dean Road, South Shields on January 28.

Blake, a bingo caller of the year, said: “I’ve managed to get in touch with some 
of the ex-staff of the Mecca and they are all looking forward to coming back together.

“It’ll be just like old times for us and we would love to see as many of our customers back to see us and to support us raising money for such a worthwhile cause.”

St Clare’s Hospice was one of the chosen charities of the Mecca staff to benefit from cash raised in a number of fundraising events ahead of the venue closing. The hospice, in Jarrow, provides care to those suffering with a life-limiting illness and needs to raise £1.4million a year to stay in business.

Blake added: “Since the date was confirmed we’ve all been catching up with one another and finding out what we are all doing now.

“And it’ll be great to catch up with some of our customers as we were quite a close family at the Mecca.”

As well as the cash bingo, Blake will also be singing.

The Armstrong Hall in Dean Road is under new management and has recently undergone refurbishment.

Tickets for the night, priced £3, are on sale now by calling into the venue and are available on a first come first served basis.

Doors open at 7pm. Eyes down at 8pm.