Majestic Bingo has submitted an application to increase the opening hours of its Apollo club in Barrow, extending the closing time to among the latest throughout all Majestic venues.
Under the proposed new schedule the club will have the option to open between the hours of 7am and 2am, which Majestic’s managing director Mark Jepp explained is due to a demand beyond the previous midnight closing time.
“It’s about extending the hours so we’re not a sessional- led, process-driven bingo business that says ‘you have to be in at this time, and you have yo leave by his time’,” he commented.
“We’ve found at this particular club, due to a newly refurbed lounge area, that there’s an increase in demand at weekends – some players would choose to stay later. We wanted to answer that demand, and provide the service and environment that customers can play at their own pace, sit down,have food and beverages, and play alternative games.”
Jepp added that another reason for opening later is to be a better host for themed nights and events. Apollo will also aim to extend its hours on New Year’s Eve, for which Majestic have applied to be allowed to open 24 hours from 7am on 31 December until 7am on 1 January.
“Bingo has entrenched itself around certain dates, and we are looking to embrace that,” said Jepp.
“For New Year, why not give customers the opportunity to stay around in our clubs with our staff? I’m sure we’re not the first operator to try it,but we’re going to give it a go in a couple of clubs. It’s about living and breathing the social element of bingo with customers, and staff are also part of the communities, so why not celebrate these things together?”
As well as big occasions, extended hours will also enhance the offering of Apollo’s themed nights, which “people naturally desire to stick around a little longer” for.
“It’s all about making the night an experience, you can’t do it every week,but there are opportunities,” he concluded.
“A very simple one we put on was Burns night. We are not in Scotland, but we had a nice promotion and it turned out to be our best Thursday of the year. We had people on stage dancing with kilts on – people want something to celebrate, and it makes the night last longer.”