Mecca Bingo Rochdale p.planning docs

The bingo hall has been closed since last summer. Credit: via planning documents

Sporting overhaul planned for prominent Rochdale site 

Located next to the 200,000 sq ft Rochdale Riverside shopping and entertainment complex, the town’s former Mecca Bingo is to be converted into an indoor sports centre. 

A planning application to overhaul the bingo hall, located on the corner of Smith Street and Milton Street, has been submitted to Rochdale Council by Richard Tracz, who is the founder and director of R-Kix, a youth football coaching company. 

The building, vacant since last summer after 20 years as a bingo hall and owned by the council, would be stripped out. 

A planning statement prepared by Plan8 states that the applicant wants to provide four football pitches for small-sided games, a running track, four practice cricket lanes, and a gymnasium. 

If approved, the scheme will be the latest in a string of proposals to overhaul former bingo halls. To learn more about the plans, search for reference number 22/01279/FUL on Rochdale Council’s planning portal.

The number of bingo facilities in the UK has been on the decline for several years as the popularity of the game has decreased since its peak in the 1980s. 

The number of bingo halls that have closed in recent years presents opportunities for developers to rework the sites. 

In Salford, Donard Affordable Homes recently won consent to deliver 268 homes on the former Buzz Bingo Hall in Pendleton. 

In Wythenshawe, Lidl is planning to demolish the old Gala Bingo site and build a supermarket. 

Your Comments

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What a fantastic idea

By Anonymous

I’m all for promoting sport, but its just a few yards from Rochdale Leisure Centre which incorporates a sports hall! What Rochdale town centre really needs is a theatre and music venue, like Bury Met which is fantastic. Rochdale Council is missing the point of what we need for our community, it should be something new and not a duplication of what we have a few yards away from the old bingo Hall.

By Jean Tod

That’s brilliant for the town and the commuty help for business too

By Anonymous

What a fantastic idea I’m big fan of sorts thanks for giving us more opportunity in sport

By Ghous

I feel it’s not needed in Rochdale as we have at least 6 gyms and soccer factory is perfect for football,it would be more beneficial to let the current business that do the same sports be used rather than them close down and become empty

By Scott

I would be interested in knowing the length of the lease. Does the Council see this as a medium term option or is it shelving longer term aspirations to a more comprehensive redevelopment of the site. I don’t see this as a rival to Central Leisure, as it is clearly a very different offer. Bringing Central Leisure was probably an opportunity missed though, so hopefully this will provide additional footfall and local spend. Isn’t the Touchstones refurb providing additional cultural capacity.

By Local Interest

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