IT’S dabbers at the ready and time to yell “House” once again as our favourite bingo halls prepare to emerge from their three-month shutdown.

Southend’s Mecca Bingo, in Greyhound Way, is poised to welcome back its loyal customers from Saturday (July 4) with a series of safety measures to keep everyone safe.

The move follows the Government’s announcement allowing cafes, bars, hairdressers, cinemas and bingo halls to operate again from Saturday as Covid-19 lockdown restrictions are eased further.

However, casinos are still not permitted to open.

To safeguard its players and team, Mecca has been working to put in place stringent safety standards and cleaning measures across all of its clubs.

Southend Standard:

Re-opening - Mecca Bingo, in Greyhound Way, is poised to welcome back its loyal customers from Saturday

Enhanced cleaning routines will be brought in with staff cleaning as they go and all tables, machines and touch-points will be cleaned regularly throughout the day. Visitors will be asked to clean their hands with hand sanitiser stations available around all clubs.

New “Mecca Cares” sessions will be introduced earlier in the day, for those who may be feeling a little nervous about getting back to normal life.

Customer numbers will be reduced in these sessions, to ensure all those attending feel completely comfortable in their surroundings.

Fans of the game said they are excited to get back in the bingo halls and grab their dabbers.

Sheila Potter, 67, from Leigh said: “I love bingo and have really missed it - it’s not only playing the game, it’s such a social thing and is great fun.

“You see like-minded people and I’ve made plenty of friends through the game. It will also represent going back to some sense of normality - I can’t wait.

“The new safety measures sound very helpful - especially the sessions for people worried about going out and about.

“I do hope that we don’t loose too much of the sense of the game if numbers are reduced and players are spread out.”

Jonathon Swaine, managing director of retail at Mecca Bingo, said: “We want to reassure the Mecca Bingo community that we are working together to take every precaution necessary to create a safe environment in which to play the nation’s favourite game.

“We’re also investing in new entertainment formats in our clubs, to give everyone even better experiences.

“We are excited to re-open our doors, welcome back our communities and hear ‘House’ called once again.”