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Cornwall Croquet Club
Newsletter No 44 - July 2008

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Chairman’s Corner

We are about half-way through the season, with many memories to look back on and much to look forward to. Two superb Open Days, thanks to the weather and the advanced publicity, have brought in a number of new members, and both radio and television coverage of the club. A big thank you to all who have been involved, both before and on the actual days. We entertained 27 and 30 visitors on the two days.

The turn-out for Association Club Days appears to be declining, which is a bit disappointing, but there is still plenty of interest in that code. Association Croquet may seem a bit daunting to some but, once you get the hang of it, it is an enjoyable game to play. On August 12th & 19th there is a chance to find out what the Association game is all about, so why not contact Nigel and book yourselves a place on the 'Transition to Association' course. You won't know what you're missing unless you try it.

We have had three successful guest sessions so far this season: members of Mevagissey Church and a St Austell surgery have enjoyed a taste of Golf Croquet and we had visit from Poltair School. On 29th July members of the St Austell Lions Club will be coming for the evening. Anybody available to help on the 29th would be welcomed.

Our new grass cutter is ready to put into service once we have a temporary shelter for it. We will need a few members to use it occasionally - any volunteers? This will reduce the cutting costs and help towards the costs of a third lawn. Using the mower is not restricted to male members, and training will be given.

There are some events for which entries have not closed: they are the Association Jennings Trophy (£3) and President's Cup (£5) together with the Golf Handicap Singles (£5) and the President's Cup (£5). The Short-Lawn Jennings Trophy closes on 1st Aug, the other three on the 18th August. Entries to Tony Backhouse please.

Please note we also still have places on the following coaching sessions: Improver Coaching Level 2 Session 2 on Sat Aug 2, the Transition to Association Croquet courses on Tue Aug 12, 19 and 26 and Improver Coaching Level 5 on Sun Aug 31. Please contact Nigel Grant if you are interested.

Our various teams have been doing well in the SW Federation Leagues; although we have suffered a few losses recently. The Golf team lost by one point at Dowling Wake, but had an enjoyable couple of days away. It is the only club, where I have played, where it is possible to run the first hoop from the yellow flag. The ball turns through 90 degrees, due to the slope, and does all sorts of contortions in other parts of the lawns. It must be worth at least two extra turns per game for the home team.

Summer Party - will take place after the 'Faith Hoop & Hilarity' event on Saturday the 26th July. It will start at around 5-00 pm with tea, and progress from there. Please bring a small plate of food, either savoury or sweet. Why not come a bit earlier and watch the final stages of the 'F H & H'?

Ron George


A report by Tony Backhouse

I took up the booking at Downderry House, of which more later, on the Sunday evening after an hour’s practice on the Budleigh lawns. I reckoned these to be pretty slow and after a chat with their groundsman, found that he cuts at 7mm while John cuts our lawns at 4mm.

I started off on Monday in the Handicap Knock-Out pretty badly, being beaten by 21 against a 16-handicapper, followed this by -5, then, the following morning, -4(T). The latter was the first of five matches in my C Class block, Advanced Level play. Then I began to put things together, beating a 4-handicap +7 and two 7-handicaps +18 and +16. After which things got worse again and I lost the next match -22, which, had I won, would have taken me to the top of the group. Subsequent matches for the Egyptian (handicap) were -5 and +13. Not a glorious record but, with the exception of two games where I was right off form, they were all thoroughly enjoyable.

For the Doubles Knock-Out, I was teamed with Quiller Barrett, an ex-Chairman of the CA with the same handicap as mine (7) and an extremely agreeable partner. We won the first match quite easily but then found ourselves up against Don Gaunt (-1) and Nigel Graves (7) (an ex-Secretary of the CA). It was nip and tuck all the way until I managed to peg out Don Gaunt so we were in a most advantageous position. However a simple mis-hit on a rush gave the innings to Nigel who finished off and we lost -3.

We were very lucky in the weather, the courts were at least consistent and level, my opponents amiable and I gained more free drinks than I had to stand so what could have made the week more enjoyable?

Meanwhile Pam was enjoying the lavish and varied breakfasts, the comforts of our room and the charms of Budleigh while still having time to visit Stourhead and Powderham Castle.

The B&B was superb: no other description will suffice. The bedrooms and en-suite bathrooms were modern, comfortable and well equipped. The food was excellent, booze available and the gardens colourful and extensive. Pam was not able to join me until the Tuesday but we both agreed it was a highly enjoyable week and could not have been bettered.

We are both most grateful to you all for your staggering generosity but can do no more than say “Thank you very much”!

Tony and Pam Backhouse

Lostwithiel Charity Fayre Sports Day


The Club was represented at Lostwithiel Charity Fayre Sports Day where some of our members organised a very efficient promotion of the club and croquet.

Here are some pictures ( taken by Joyce Wilson )

 The Club at Lostwithiel Charity Fayre Sports Day 2008



   Croquet HQ – all mod cons!


 The Club at Lostwithiel Charity Fayre Sports Day 2008


   Some instruction required!   


 The Club at Lostwithiel Charity Fayre Sports Day 2008







In our last issue we asked for contributions from members, croquet related or otherwise – well, Joyce Wilson has sent me a couple of her poems which she thought we might enjoy
(only one this time, I’m keeping the other for the next issue!).


Ode to a Well Bred Mongrel

Pools of liquid amber gaze at me.

Mute devotion, no words needed.

Golden eyes silently follow my every move.

Silken ears lift and turn, anticipating where I will go.

Blue black curls swirl and heave,

Catching the light with a thousand diamonds

Sprinkled carelessly about.

A silken chin rests feather light upon my knee.

Trust, total trust, glows from deep within.

A dark shadow tracing every step I take.

Deep recrimination hanging silent on the air

When she is left behind.

The frenzied greeting white tipped tail beating its tattoo.

The wriggling body curling, warmly soft

Leans heavy against my side

As velvet pads rest upon my lap.

Snuggling close, I hear a long heavy sigh.

She has her way at last.

Dog and mistress, mistress and dog.

We are as one.

Copyright Joyce Wilson

   Some people will endure any weather in the pursuit of victory!

   Joyce & Lyne on their way to 4 th place
   in the Club’s Golf Croquet doubles.



   A picture from our Open Day
   on Sunday 29 June 2008





DOUBLE-BANKED GAMES and the Special Laws which apply - Law 52

More than one game may be played concurrently on one court using differently coloured sets of balls. The players, balls, clips and mallets of one game are outside agencies (see Law 7) with respect to the other game.

Precedence should normally be given to players in the following order: -

1. to a player who is making a break.

2. to a player who is most likely to get clear of the relevant area first.

3. to a player who will not require balls from another game to be marked and moved.

Marking balls

If a ball is not in a critical position , the permission of the players of the other game should be obtained so that it may be temporarily removed after its position has been marked.

If a ball is in a critical position , the player should normally interrupt his turn until it has been removed in the normal course of play in the other game.

Additional Laws of conduct in double banked games.

The players of each game should be aware of the course of play in the other game, especially when stepping onto the court. In particular, they should avoid crossing another player's line of aim. Interference by balls or players of the other game is dealt with under Laws 33 and 34.

All players should carry suitable ball markers.

In doubles play, the striker's partner should be ready to mark balls in either game on the court.

One game should not normally be started within five minutes of the start of the other game.

See Law 52 for the full detail.


These occur rarely, but special circumstances are catered for under Law 54, as follows

Clubs or persons controlling courts may request the appropriate governing body to approve a local law in order to meet a special need. If a local law is so approved, play must be in accordance therewith provided that it is properly advertised at the club or courts concerned.

  Not many people know this!

There was only ever one croquet competition in Olympic Games history, held in 1900 in Paris. France won all events, which is not surprising as only French competitors took part!

In this event, the first women to take part in the Olympic Games occurred on June 28, 1900. It was also not a success with the spectators, only one fan watched the events - an Englishman who had travelled from Nice especially for the occasion.

No wonder we have not seen this event at the Olympics since!

The results: -

One Ball Singles : Aumoitte (1st), John (2nd), Waydeliche (3rd),
                          Aumoitte beat John 21-15 in the final.

Doubles : Aumoitte & John, (No silver or bronze awarded).

Singles - Two Balls : Waydelich (1st), Vignerot (2nd), Sautereau (3rd).

Singles Handicap - Two Balls : Vignerot.

 Olympic Pictogram for Croquet      Olympic pictogram for Croquet