Fenland plumber hits the jackpot - but bingo caller did not hear him so he missed out on £10,000 prize

Ronald Price looks at the completed line in his book with his wife Denise. Picture: STEVE WILLIAMS

Ronald Price looks at the completed line in his book with his wife Denise. Picture: STEVE WILLIAMS - Credit: Archant

A plumber missed out on a £10,000 win after a bingo club manager failed to stop play as part of a national link-up game.

It is the second time that Ronald Price has seen winnings slip away from his grasp.

On Monday he shot his hand in the air and shouted when he got the fifth number needed to complete a line for £10,000.

A checker at Winners Bingo in Wisbech went to verify his card and the excited crowd looked to the manager to stop the game that is relayed to independent clubs across the country.

But the manager did not react, according to Mr Price’s wife Denise, and instead the host caller who was running the link-up game continued to read the numbers.

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Seconds later the line was won by a player from another bingo club.

Winners says the manager didn’t hear the shout – and says that bingo rules insist the caller has to hear a claim to stop the game.

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A year ago a similar situation happened and the club ended up paying Mr Price £1,000 winnings after it was queried.

Mrs Price, of Walpole St Andrew, a cleaner at a care home, said: “I was jumping up and down excited. People in the club went mad shouting Wisbech has got it! Wisbech has got it!

“The game should then be stopped to check the numbers, but it wasn’t and the caller continued and somebody else won - we missed out on our winnings through no fault of our own.

“There were people shouting, one woman was in tears saying she has been to bingo for 25 years and has never seen anything like it. She is refusing to go back to Winners until this is sorted out.”

Mr Price added: “I shouted out loud. The checker heard me because he came over to me with his microphone. “Loads of players in the club heard. I went white when I realised the game hadn’t been stopped.”

The couple have been playing at the Blackfriars Road club since 2006 and enjoy bingo at least three times a week.

Mrs Price said: “It is a hell of a lot of money. It would make a massive difference to our lives.”

A spokesman for Winners Bingo said: “As all bingo customers know, the rules of bingo clearly state that any player must emphatically stop the caller, and that the caller’s decision is final.

“In this instance, the Wisbech club manager, who has been in the business for more than 40 years, announced immediately before the game that players should ensure that any claims are loud and clear.

“When the disputed claim arose for the line prize in question, neither the manager nor the caller, who were both on stage at the time, heard any claim.

“The manager alerted the calling club on noticing audience movement but by this time the next number was started by the caller, thereby invalidating the claim by the Wisbech member.

“It was apparent to the manager that members sitting in close proximity to the player claimed that they had heard something but players sitting further away and especially by the stage heard no claim at all.

“Winners Bingo share the member’s disappointment that the member missed out on this prize.”

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