CARLTON Bingo have defended their decision to continue a game in Dunfermline despite an elderly woman suffering a suspected stroke.

Around 300 customers were in the hall at Fife Leisure Park last Thursday evening when the incident took place.

Paramedics attended the scene at around 8pm to treat the woman, understood to be in her 80s.

Although the game was stopped briefly, staff made the move to resume play.

One woman in attendance, who wished to remain anonymous, claimed dozens of people were calling out for the game to be stopped.

"I thought the whole incident was shocking," she said.

"The young woman trying to phone 999 couldn't make herself heard over all the numbers being called out and she was running in and out of the hall trying to tell the emergency services what was happening.

"The hall was stifling hot and a lot of people were struggling to breathe.

"This woman needed medical help but it seemed as though they were more focused on keeping the game going than her wellbeing.

"You would think that her health was more important than a trivial game of bingo.

"The operator had stopped but she was then told by a manager, I think, to keep calling out the numbers.

"I thought it was disgusting."

Shaun Gibson, operations manager, told the Press that staff dealt with the elderly woman – who the family believed may have had a suspected stroke – at the time of the incident.

He said that continuing the game was, "normal practice in unfortunate incidents like this".

Mr Gibson commented: "The bingo game was stopped and staff went to assist the customer.

"After speaking with the family members present, we decided to continue with the bingo which is normal practice in unfortunate incidents like this.

"In these situations, we aim to protect the customer’s privacy as best we can and continuing with the bingo is the best way to achieve this.

"This allowed staff to attend to the customer and, under guidance from the ambulance service, make the customer as comfortable as possible until paramedics arrived.

"A member of the family kindly visited the club the following day to inform us that the customer, who took unwell, had been allowed home from hospital and thanked the club for their assistance on the night."

A spokesman for the Scottish Ambulance Service said: “We received a call at 8.08pm to attend to a patient at Fife Leisure Park.

"We dispatched an ambulance to the scene and a woman in her 80s was conveyed to Victoria Hospital, Kirkcaldy."