The sheer pleasure of playing friendlies, meeting players from other clubs, exchanging stories, experiences and a nice afternoon tea on top.
There are so many good things from learning to play Croquet that it’s really difficult to find one! ‘The people I’ve met’ really stands out and I’m so grateful to all of you. I was a complete beginner, not at all sporty, and I needed a couple of extra lessons just to get me on to the lawn. Thank you for letting me be part of this wonderful outdoor traditional sport (even at my low level!) and meet such lovely new friends
Simply put: the ‘Meet and Greet’
I only have praise for the very friendly way I have been received by members of HWCC. Geoff Brook has been an excellent Roll Up Organiser, and Penny Austin a good friend who encouraged me to join the Club. Thanks also to the members whose company I have enjoyed even though I still have my ‘L plates’ on!
As a non-sporty person, I was really out of my comfort zone. But after borrowing a mallet and receiving good tutoring and mentoring from patient and friendly members, I gained enough confidence to really enjoy this experience. I look forward to continuing when Boris gives us the go-ahead!
How lucky we are to have such a wonderful hobby, club, fantastic lawns and clubhouse, and such wonderful members many of whom work really hard for the club and some of whom have become friends for life!
Richard, Bertie and I have enjoyed walking cross-country to croquet as opposed to catching the bus and have also had fun picking blackberries on the way home. We have also enjoyed seeing Bertie's enthusiasm for croquet grow and been pleasantly surprised by how he sometimes does some very good shots. He has also benefited from seeing familiar faces whilst off school.
So many things to appreciate, writes Penny Austin. Being able to play Croquet during the lockdown has been my "saving grace." We were so fortunate that Croquet, with its imposed restrictions, was one of the few sports that was allowed to be played during those long months of isolation.
This Club has such a welcoming, friendly atmosphere about it and the experienced players are so helpful in sharing their knowledge and skilfully demonstrating techniques which one looks forward to hopefully achieving oneself one day!
I know that the work that goes into keeping the beautifully flat lawns in top condition does not happen on its own and I have become aware of the hard work by many club members that is quietly and continually going on in the background, for which we, club members should be really grateful.
The Roll Up Sessions which Geoffrey Brook has so kindly been organizing for us have introduced us to a wider group of members which would never have happened if left to ourselves as individuals and it has meant that we were sure of at least one or two games each week. This has made it easier for all of us to fix up our own games.
I say that Croquet was my Saving Grace because having experienced a bereavement a year earlier and also succumbed to debilitating arthritis in my ankles, my extremely active life (walking, tap dancing and Scottish dancing) had suddenly been forced into one of inactivity. The fact that the lawns are flat has enabled me to take part in a new sport and enjoy some very challenging and enjoyable games.
I am on the bottom step of the ladder and the only way is UP! So, Croquet has created the desire for this octogenarian to take on the new challenge of learning more about the game and improving her skill. I say that it is never too late to learn something new!
In short, "Croquet has opened up my life again."
One lovely moment for me: being in the right place at the right time to take a photograph of two wonderful players under a beautiful rainbow!