Raid on A Former Welsh Bingo Hall 'Leaves' Police Gobsmacked with Findings!

Raid on A Former Welsh Bingo Hall 'Leaves' Police Gobsmacked with Findings!

Playing bingo is a pastime many of us have enjoyed for decades. The popular numbers game has been around for centuries and before the invention of the internet where bingo games are readily available 24/7, players would venture off to their local to see if their luck was in.

Over the past twenty years (or so), more and more bingo brands have turned to the online bingo scene, which has led to bingo hall closures on the high street. Nobody knows just how many former bingo halls are standing empty, but what we do know is that criminals are targeting them for financial gain.

Over to Wales now, the country I call home. Recently, police raided a former bingo hall (and hotel) in the Rhondda (pronounced Rhon-tha) Cynon Taf area and found three drugs dens built on an ‘industrial scale!’

More than 1,000 cannabis plants have been found in the past week and the biggest was discovered in the old Diamond Jubilee Hotel building which was once famous for bingo games. Officers from South Wales police positioned themselves on site as soon as they found the drugs haul, but they couldn’t enter due to the building’s “structural integrity.

Works had to be carried out on the building in numerous places before authorities could enter safely. Strangely enough, this isn’t the first time this building has been a target for criminals looking to sell drugs on the high street; in 2007, £2m worth of cannabis were discovered there!

A Bingo Dobber!

A police spokesman added: "Less than a week later, on March 3, a large cannabis factory was discovered inside the old NatWest bank building on Forge Street, Pentre. And most recently, on Wednesday March 4, the old bingo hall on High Street, Pontypridd, was found to contain a number of plants."

Since the discovery, a 26-year old man has been arrested and is currently in police custody. You may be surprised to learn that former bingo halls are popular when it comes to criminal activity. A derelict Gala Bingo hall in Kettering was found to be housing £2.8m worth of cannabis plants back in the summer of 2019.

Northants Police took to social media in an attempt to ‘weed’ out the criminal, however, they failed to hit the jackpot with this one and the case remains unsolved.

You can spot a cannabis factory near your home by the following signs:

  • Smell – it will be strong and sickly
  • The windows may be misty and will constantly be covered up in order for the plants to soak up the artificial lights inside
  • Look out for heat signals! In the winter when everything grows white from ice (or snow!), the roof on a cannabis farm will always be warm and this means nothing cold will stick.

Will it be a case of ‘pot luck’ when it comes to catching Rhondda’s drug’s gang? Keep out for an update coming soon.

Land Based Bingo News Back to articles