Orders for clothing with logo

Last call for new clothing orders

I am hoping to put in a group order later next week beginning Monday, 17 June for clothing from DARTS. I appreciate that new members may be unsure of what to order. The catalogue in the pavilion is not that easy to navigate, and no prices are given. However, the catalogue is on line and can be accessed on http://www.dartschester.co.uk , and the prices can be found on line for each item. VAT has to be added on and the cost of the logo. If I order more than 6 items the cost is £4 per unit, plus VAT. It is considerably more if you order individually (£12 plus VAT for 1-2 items)

Not all items can be purchased in white, so check the colour range if you are wanting whites to wear for matches and tournaments. You can of course get coloured items with the logo on. Nice for wearing at other times and spreading the word about the club !

Hear are some examples of the brands we have ordered in the past, but you are not obliged to do the same, hence the available catalogue :

Polos Henbury, Kustom Kit, Russel,
Fleeces Result Core Microfleece and Polartherm Jacket
Gilets and bodywarmers Result Core

I will be at the club on Monday morning, 17 June, and Wednesday morning, 19 June, and will bring some of my own clothing that people can look at / try on to check sizes. If anybody else already with DARTS clothing is willing to bring theirs along also to give some guidance, that would be very helpful.

You can also visit the DARTS showroom on Tarvin Road and have a look at some of the examples they have there. Explain that you are with Chester Croquet Club and that you are trying to decide on what to put on our group order, which we are putting together. They are usually very helpful.

Please email me direct on jaytay20ch@aol.com .

Jayne Taylor

Clothing with club logo

As most of you will know DARTS have our logo on their embroidery machines and I usually put together an order based on individual requests. You can either purchase the clothes from DARTS or have your own embroidered. There is a DARTS 2023 catalogue (the latest one) in the club house, which has a range of polos, fleeces and sweatshirts (add VAT to the prices). If you want to get your own clothes embroidered (ie not purchased from DARTS), they must be new/unworn/unwashed.

The cost to embroider the logos is as follows :
DARTS clothing, more than 6 items, £4 plus VAT per item. Less than 6 costs more ( 1-2 items = £12 plus VAT, 3-5 = £6 plus VAT ). Hence I try to put a joint order together of more than 6 to keep costs down.
Own clothing is £8 each for more than 6 items, £18 for 1-2, and £10 for 3-5 items.

You can see how it can get complicated ! There is a good range in the catalogue, and prices are not unreasonable.

Do ask if you want to see some examples of the whites others have purchased and to check for sizing. I can bring along some examples of the polos and fleeces I have purchased, and I am sure others would be prepared to as well.

Let me know if you want me to include you in an order, and for what. E-mail me at jaytay20ch@aol.com

All the best

Jayne Taylor

Win v Craggy Dons

On Saturday, 8 June, at Westminster Park the Chester Senators played Craggy Dons from Llandudno in an 18 game match in the NW Federation golf croquet handicap league. Chester, under captain Edward Baskerville ably supported by Christine Fryer, David Johnson and Rhia Taylor began well by winning both the doubles games. However, the Dons captained by Nick Challinor and supported by Beth McClelland, John Hannah and Linda Taylor began to fight back in the singles. The Dons, despite scoring 103 advantage points against the Senators 109 points, were held off by Chester Senators who won the match 11 games to 7. An excellent performance by David Johnson who finished the afternoon winning all four of his games in glorious sunshine, albeit with a rather chilly wind.

Chester’s man of the match, David Johnson, second from left

Early June matches

Saturday, 1 June, saw Chester host its first ever nationwide “B” series tournament for Level Play Golf Croquet, drawing players ( and Bertie the dog) from all over the country, in a competition for players with a 3 handicap or above, playing in at least 7 games each. The winner Chris Higgins from Bishops Monkton triumphed over Robert Purcell from Ludlow Castle, in a close fought final, with Edwin Bone from Eynsham winning a close battle with Jill Brent (and Bertie the dog) to win the plate competition ( which happened to be a bottle of champagne !). Local Chester members, Edward Baskerville and Rick Davies battled it out for third and fourth place in the main competition, with Edward wining the cup (or rather the tankard). This was a well fought and sociable competition on a lovely day; enjoyed by participants, helpers and those watching. We look forward to another one next year !

On the following day, Sunday, 2 June, David Guyton, David Boyd, Mark Lloyd and Andy Wilson-Chalon played for Chester at home against Crake Valley in the NW Federation Association Croquet 26 point handicap league. For a change the weather was sunny if a little chilly, and the lawns benefitted from being cut for the golf croquet tournament on the previous day. They were dry and fast, prompting more overshoots approaching the hoops and at the boundary than players might have wished. Fortunes varied during the day, with Crake Valley forging ahead in the morning, but Chester regaining the upper hand in the afternoon leading to a 4-3 win by the Chester team.

At the same time, the Chester Senators Golf Croquet team travelled to Southport to play a Golf Croquet handicap league match, and also benefitted from the dry and windy weather which had helped to dry out some of the Southport lawns that had been waterlogged earlier in the week. Gail Thomas (capt), Sandy Grievson, Doreen Curtis and Mel Hagan had a long but enjoyable day, and succeeded in holding the home team to a very close result, losing by only 10 – 8.

On Tuesday, 4 June, Chester Chariots faced a much more experienced Golf Croquet team from Crake Valley in a NW Federation Level Play league match. Not surprisingly the low handicap players of Crake (at levels 1 and 2) soundly beat the Chester team of Jayne Taylor, Edward Baskerville and Kerry Dadson ( all on level 5) but the games were well fought with Edward and Jayne prevailing in two of them, which eased the pain. Unfortunately the already wet lawns became waterlogged under a downpour in the afternoon and the last four games of the match had to be abandoned, leaving the score at 12 games to 2.

In contrast on Thursday, 6 June, Chester Centurions, with Mark Lloyd, Garry Greenwood and David Boyd (all on level 1 handicap) faced a team from Westmorland (on handicaps 6, 10 and 10), and produced an equally convincing result, winning 17 games to 1 in a Level Play golf croquet league match. Fortunately the weather was somewhat kinder !

It’s a busy season !

One up, one down

Chester fielded teams in two NW Federation league matches on Sunday, 2 June.

At home Chester played against Crake Valley in the association croquet 26 point handicap league. The Chester team for this match were David Guyton (captain), David Boyd, Mark Lloyd and Andy Wilson-Chalon. For a change, it was bright and sunny throughout the day though at times with a distinct chill in the wind. The lawns were in good condition and had been cut specially for the golf croquet tournament held on the previous day. After the early morning dew had evaporated, they were dry and faster than at any time so far this year. As a result there were more than average overshoots at hoop approaches and at boundaries. By lunchtime, Chester were lagging behind having won one singles game but losing the doubles game and another singles game in the morning. Fortunes improved in the afternoon when Chester won three of the four singles games and losing the other by a single golden hoop after both sides had equal scores when time was called. The overall result was a 4 – 3 win for Chester.

In an away match against Southport in the golf croquet handicap league, the Chester team were Gail Thomas (captain), Doreen Curtis, Sandy Grievson and Mel Hagen. As at Chester, the forecast had been good – dry and sunny all day – but further north and on the coast it turned out to be overcast but with the same chilly wind in the morning. The afternoon brightened somewhat and the sun came out as we were leaving! Apparently the lawns had been very wet early in the week and one of the four was still unplayable. We had two lawns to play on and they were fine – a little dew early on but that soon dried. A long day but enjoyable with a final score 10 – 8 to Southport.


New AC beginners course

A new six week AC beginners course will start on Tuesday, 11 June, at 5 pm.

It is aimed primarily at those new members who joined partway through the first course and those that wish to repeat part or all of it.

It will also be linked into a developers/improvers course that will run in tandem. The improvers course will focus on one particular aspect each week.

With a short introduction/demonstration followed by a practice session and then rounded off with conditioned games.

Anyone wishing to learn the rudiments of the game or develop and enhance their existing skill set will be very welcome. Just come along!

Robert Jones

Late May matches

The season is proving to be a busy one, with very variable weather !

On the Thursday, 16 May, the Chester Centurions, a three player team, travelled to LLanfairfechan  to play a Golf Croquet Level Play league match.  The day started bright and sunny with a sea breeze, but by lunchtime the Welsh mountains were shrouded in mist and  the rain came down bringing a wet afternoon. The match was a close one, with Llanfairfechan 5-4 at lunchtime, but Chester pulled back to 9-8 in the rain. The last game was won by the closest of margins, closing the match at a draw 9-9. A fitting score for two well balanced teams.

The annual club tournament for the Fletton Trophy took place on Sunday, 19 May, at Chester under blue skied and wonderful sunshine. This is an advanced association croquet competition and Richard Smith, David Boyd, David Guyton, Robin Tasker, Mark Lloyd and Roger Brooks  played each other in five rounds of games, each game limited to 70 minutes. That was a lot of croquet under a hot sun ! The games were hard fought, with a high standard of play, and the final round decider between the two highest seed players saw Richard victorious over Roger at 14 points to 8.

In stark contrast, on Wednesday, 22 May, an all ladies team of Jayne Taylor, Val Sanders and Sarah Clements ventured northwards in heavy rain and very heavy traffic to play a short lawn assciation croquet league match against Westmorland.  The setting of Levens Hall was beautiful, and the host team was very welcoming, but the continuous rain, low temperature and soggy lawns proved physically testing. The final result was very close with Westmorland winning 5 games and Chester 4, Sarah excelling in her first ever AC match by winning all her 3 games.

Then on Sunday, 26 May, an association croquet handicap team of Sally Slater (captain), David Boyd, David Guyton and Andy Wilson-Chalon played Bury Peelers at their Whitehead Park venue in Bury. Unsurprisingly there had been a lot of rain, making the lawns heavy and wet and difficult to play on at the start. The rain came in patches, interspersed with periods of warm sunshine and the lawns got faster during the day. Chester won the doubles but lost both singles in the morning giving a score of 2-1 to Bury at lunchtime. In the afternoon the singles matches were very closely fought and each side won two games, giving Bury a final score of 4-3. The day finished in a thunderstorm and torrential rain!

A week that demonstrated just how much nicer it is to play croquet when the weather is good !

Fletton Trophy

The club’s annual tournament for the Fletton Trophy took place on Sunday, 19 May, under blue skies and wonderful hot sunshine.

The Fletton Trophy is an association croquet competition played under Advanced rules and, this year, as a 14-point, time-limited all-play-all one day tournament.

There were six entrants with a handicap range between -0.5 and 5, and so five rounds of matches each limited to 70 minutes. And that equated to a lot of croquet under a hot sun on excellent lawns, and by the finish some tired croquet players.

The tournament draw meant that the top seeds would play in the final round and, if they had both managed to win in their previous rounds, would determine the winner of Fletton Trophy. And so it proved – just.

In the first round Richard Smith (-0.5) was easing to victory until David Boyd (5) staged a remarkable comeback running 6 hoops and pegging out his front ball to draw level as time was called. In the ensuing Golden Hoop cat and mouse play Richard eventually sneaked to an 8-7 victory. Elsewhere Roger Brooks (-0.5) had swept to a commanding 14-1 win to start his campaign.

Richard continued his progression through the rounds beating Mark Lloyd (0.5), David Guyton (4.5) and Robin Tasker (4.5) but never being entirely convincing without a pegged out game. By contrast Roger sailed through his subsequent rounds failing to peg out on only one occasion and that with a close fought 12-9 victory over Mark.

In the final round decider Richard took his front ball round to peg with a good diagonal spread leave. Roger hit in from the lift and proceeded to go round also to peg and took the opportunity to peg out Richard’s front ball for a 3-ball game. Whilst Roger started well, Richard hit in with his single ball and took that round to peg out for a 14-8 victory to win the Fletton Trophy.

And so after more than 7.5 hours play, and 15 matches, six weary sun-drenched croquet players made their ways home. Congratulations go to Richard for his win, and many thanks to the others for a thoroughly enjoyable day.

Competitors for the Fletton Trophy. Left to right: David Guyton, Roger Brooks, Mark Lloyd, Richard Smith, the winner holding his trophy, and David Boyd. The other participant, Robin Tasker, who also organised the event, was unable to appear as he took the photograph !

Llanfairfechan Short Lawn

The Chester short lawn team travelled to Llanfairfechan on Saturday, 18 May, for their north west league match. It promised to be a glorious day but a sea fret rolled in making it cold and misty most of the day. The Chester team had two brand new players who had never played a short lawn match before, Andy Wilson-Chalon and Ant Fletcher, so it was a fabulous achievement for Andy to win two games and Ant to peg out for a win. The overall score was 11-5 to Llanfairfechan.


This was the fifth match Chester has played against Llanfairfechan in May with only one win for Chester, one draw and three wins for Llanfairfechan.

Thursday, 2 May     GC Level Play: Chester Chariots (H)       L 5 – 10
Saturday, 4 May      AC 14pt Full Lawn (H)                                   W 11 – 5
Saturday, 11 May     GC Handicap: Chester Senators (A)         L 7 -11
Thursday, 16 May   GC Level Play:  Chester Centurions (A)  D 9 – 9
Saturday, 18 May     AC Short Lawn (A)                                          L 5 -11

Llanfairfechan GC Level Play

A three-player Chester Centurions team travelled to Llanfairfechan on Thursday, 16 May, to play a golf croquet level play league match. The day started bright and sunny with a slightly chilly sea breeze. Llanfairfechan opened the nine-game match with a strong win but the succeeding games were all very close and neither side managed to open a convincing gap. By lunchtime Llanfairfechan led by 5 games to 4 and an ominous mist started to shroud the Welsh mountains. And then the rain came down. In the wet afternoon session Chester edged ahead by winning some very close games and as the last game started were in the lead by 9 games to 8. That last game was played in a cold drizzle and was won by the closest of margins by Llanfairfechan to close the match at a 9 to 9 draw – a fitting score for two well balanced teams.

Chester front row left to right Mark Lloyd, Sarah Clements and Tom Grievson with the home team at Llanfairfechan
Croquet is definitely an energetic game

Early Bird Doubles

After a week of fine weather, the weather was again kind to us on Sunday, 12 May, when we managed to hold this high handicap golf croquet doubles competition, with 12 competitors forming 6 pairs, each pair playing all of the other five pairs during the day. There were some very close games, hard fought, with very few going to 7 hoops within the 45 minutes. One of the last two games of the day proved to be the decider, with one pair winning 4 of their 5 games, and three pairs winning 3. The winners were Gail Thomas and Paulette Thomas. Of the three pairs that won 3 of their games, Liz Griffiths and Lesley Newman claimed second place on the basis of net hoop score, having run 23 hoops and conceded 19, whilst Liz Baskerville and Wendy Lord came third having run 21 hoops and conceded 20.

Many thanks to all who took part and made it a very enjoyable competition. But thanks particularly to Jude Wise and Doreen Curtis for their super assistance with the management of the day and the catering.

For those of you who wish they could have taken part, there will be another similar competition at the end of the season, the Hi-Tails. Hopefully the weather will be kinder to us than last year and we will be able to hold it. Look out for an announcement later in the year !

Left: Gail Thomas and Paulette Thomas, winners of the Early Bird competition, with Jayne Taylor, competition organiser, in the centre. Right: All the participants in this year’s competition.

On the same day, a Chester team travelled to Fylde to play a 26-point full lawn association croquet handicap league match. The team of Mark Lloyd, David Guyton, Sally Slater and Robin Tasker (captain) faced a Fylde team on a lovely hot sunny day but also on well-grassed, challenging and bumpy lawns. This made for some entertaining – and some may say frustrating – play, and rather more jump shots than might normally be expected in an AC match.

In the morning session the Chester doubles pairing of Mark Lloyd and Robin Tasker was defeated despite a late comeback that at least made for an exciting finish, and with the singles games shared Fylde took a 2-1 lead into lunch. And a sociable lunch was enjoyed by all under the shade of a convenient tree.

In the afternoon with both the temperature and humidity rising four tight singles games were played and eventually shared to give Fylde an overall 4 – 3 victory. The match was played in good spirit and our thanks go to the Fylde team for their hospitable welcome to us.

At the close of play the sky had greyed over and the first few drops of rain were felt. There were increasing showers on the journey home and by the time the team reached Chester, the sky was black, the rain was torrential, and repeated thunder and lightning were all around. Thus came to an end the longest few days of sunny, warm and dry weather since last summer.