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Did you ever wonder whose brilliant brain thought up the sports and games we play today?

This blog series will investigate some of the UK's favourite family games and looks at when and why they were created. This is a great opportunity to celebrate UK heritage and encourage kids to start playing croquet for more Montessori play!

Over the next five weeks, we will explore a game per week to look at the history of garden games through the years!

Week two - Croquet

“You can learn more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ― Plato

Popular Play

Croquet is a relatively contemporary game, widely practised in France and borrowed by the British, originating from Ireland in the 1830s. Jaques of London then played an important role in popularising the game, producing editions of the rules in 1857.

By the 1850s it had become very popular in England because it was one of the first sports in Victorian times that women could play equally alongside men. It was deemed so popular, in fact, that Croquet was actually an Olympic Sport in the 1900 Olympics in Paris!

Few family businesses can say they influenced the development of a game in the way Jaques of London has shaped the game of croquet!

Kids Extra-Curricular

If they are old enough to hold the mallet, they are old enough to enjoy the game!

This is a relatively budget back garden game and can be one to transcend generations—bringing the whole family together.

A gentle introduction to playing this game for little ones is to set up some foam pool noodles as arches and get kids to kick a ball through each of them. This teaches them hand-eye coordination and may just spark a lifelong love of the croquet game.

Amazing Croquet Facts

  1. Croquet reached the South Pole in 2005 when American scientists became the first to play a game there, in the snow, outside the South Pole Observatory

  2. Wimbledon was originally a croquet club.

  3. There were teams from 17 countries at the last croquet World Championships in 2010.