A Winning Streak.

In our first AC League Match against Oxford University we finished 3-1 ahead. Here is the scoresheet.

Oxford University Charles Sharpe H10 26-3 v Gareth Hobby H12
Oxford University Danny Dawson H18 15-23 v Charles Briggs H14
Oxford University Josh Jackson H24 11- 18 v Neil George H16
Oxford University Sam Reynolds H24 7 -26 v Will Watson H20

Congratulations to Neil whose handicap has now come down to 14.

In the Advantage GC Handicap League Caversham Blue, Jane, Timbo, Chris and Charles, travelled to Winchester to secure an 11-5 victory.

Here is the scoresheet.

Hats Off! A Sunny Open Day on Saturday 25th May.

Judy (most colourful hat) and Mike Reddy hosted our annual Club Open Day in May, ably assisted by several other Club members. Anne Small even produced a children’s set for the very young!

Our Club coach Tim Small gave instruction to some of the 10 visitors who came on the day ably assisted by 2nd hat Tim Leverton.

Even our treasurer Chris Barnard (right hat) learned a thing or two from Timbo.

Hats off! Joan Crossman stands at ease and Linda Allan lends an ear!

Great to have had a sunny day and good interest from the public. We had ten visitors in all, which was four more than last year. So, well worth the effort and many thanks to all who helped promote our sport on the day. Our waiting list for membership has now been added to!

Match Update.

All our GC League teams have been in action during May. All matches were played at Caversham where the players enjoyed plenty of homemade cake to boost their energy. Thank you to all members who have played, helped prepare the lawn, provided refreshments and come along to support our players.

The One Court League saw Red V Yellow (12 May) with the Yellow team winning 4-1. Red represented by the two Tims (Small and Leverton)  and Liz Walker and Jane Probitts playing for Yellow. 

18 May – Yellow (Charles Briggs and Liz Walker) won 5-0 against Black (Pam Briggs and Mike Reddy)

23 May –  Black (Judy Reddy and Chris Barnard) won 4-1 against Red (Neil George making his debut appearance alongside Tim Small )

In the Advantage League our Blue team went to Phyllis Court for their opening match on 20 May. Two courts are required with 4 games of double banked singles. It was neck and neck at the half way stage after the first 8 games, but then home advantage for Phyllis Court gave them an 11-5 overall win. Well done to Tim Small, Pam and Charles Briggs and Liz Walker.  

Future matches are listed on TeamUp. 

You are on the ladder!

Welcome to May, and the start of our new Caversham Climbers croquet ladder competitions – organised by Gareth Hobby.

  • You can challenge anyone on the ladder within 5 places of you, up or down.
  • If the higher player wins then they advance one position up the ladder.
  • If the lower player wins then they advance to just above the higher player
  • Please adjust your positions on the ladder in the clubhouse, but also send all results to me (garethhobby@aol.com) and enter them in your handicap cards
  • You can only play each other person once per month, in each competition
  • The GC games are played using the Advantage system 
  • The AC games are 14 pt games with 1:45 timelimit, played using a base handicap of 5  

Starting positions have been drawn at random and the ladders have been set up as follows:

GC Ranked List
1Chris Barnard10
2Mark Keogh6
3Mike Parker10
4Maureen Stewart14
5Wil Watson8
6Kate Armitage12
7John Wakeford10
8Liz Walker10
9Tim Leverton8
10Brian Jamieson4
11Dave Murray10
12Mike Reddy7
13Linda Allen12
14Marjorie Tierney14
15Anne Small5
16Judy Reddy10
17Katherine Molyneux14
18Bill Runacre10
19Tim Small7
20Charles Briggs8
21Jane Probitts12
22Jill Murray12
23Pam Briggs8
24Carol Jamieson6
25Gareth Hobby7
26Stella Kendall11
27Neil George9
28Molly Anderson14
29Carol Hill10
30Pauline Fisher11
31Deanna Nield12
32Sally Judge12
Starting positions have been drawn at random
AC Ranked List
1Will Watson20
2Terry Marsh20
3John Wakeford22
4Mark Keogh16
5Chris Grieves16
6Michael Kay4
7Francis Brown20
8Carol Jamieson20
9Mike Reddy24
10Phil Sweeney24
11Bob Eales11
12Brian Jamieson9
13Gareth Hobby12
14Chris Barnard20
15Charles Briggs14
16Jasmine Marsh24
17Liz Walker24
18Neil George16
19Ben Hargreaves16
Starting positions have been drawn at random

If anyone who wants to play in the competition has been missed off the lists, then please let me know and I’ll add you to the bottom of the ladder.

If you don’t yet have a handicap then don’t let that stop you taking part – you can play off a handicap of 20 in AC or 10 in GC, but your scores won’t count towards handicap cards for you or your opponents.

Gareth will provide a separate sheet to illustrate how to calculate bisques for the AC games (to hopefully avoid confusion)

If you have any questions, please drop Gareth an email or a text on 07557 347420.

Ladder Rules

Starting positions on each ladder have been assigned at random.

You are allowed to challenge anyone on the board within 5 places, above or below.

You may only play each opponent once per month in each competition (once in AC and once in GC)

You can book the lawn as normal, up to 7 days in advance.

Please double-bank where possible (however AC and GC games should not play at the same time)

If the lower player wins, they move above the higher player, if not the higher player moves up one place 


Each game is a formal match, using your AC or GC handicap, and should be recorded on your handicap card(s)

AC games should be played to 14-pts with a time limit of 1:45  and a handicap base of 5

GC games should be standard 7-pt game using the Advantage system

At the end of your game, please adjust the relative position of your lollipops, update your handicap cards and email me your results (with date and time of match) 


You should use your current handicap from the start of that day.

Players without handicaps can still take part.  They will be assigned a temporary handicap for the purpose of the competition (AC:20 and GC:10) but matches they take part in will not count towards anyone’s handicap and should not be recorded on handicap cards by either player.

AC ‘Handicap base of 5’ explained:

  • if both players have a handicap greater than 9 then each player gets bisques, calculate their bisques as if they were playing a player of handicap 0, and then take off the base of 5
  • If either player has a handicap of 9 or below then handicaps are calculated as normal for a 14 pt game

Monthly Updates

Each month, I will check the order of the ladder and email out a set of results and an updated ladder position.

After two months, any player who has not played any games at all will be removed from the ladder. 

If they wish to rejoin at a later stage, then they are welcome to do so, and will do so at the bottom.

Good luck everyone and play well.



Many thanks to Gareth for volunteering to take on the organisation of this new initiative and thanks to Neil George for suggesting the ladder and actually making it!

Charity One Ball.

Follow the Money! Treasurer beats Chair.

A great sunny start to the Croquet season at Albert Road with our Charity 1 Ball Club Heat on Saturday 13th April raising £130 for British Heart Foundation – a great result for our Treasurer Chris Barnard who also won the day!

Semi finalists Will Watson, Charles Briggs, Chris Barnard and Brian Jamieson.

Twelve contestants battled it out in the First rounds – each playing 3 matches, first to peg out with 13 points but with a 40 minute time limit per game. With 3 players each winning all 3 of their games the 4th semi final position was between Brian and John, each with 2 wins but with Brian having a net hoop score of 9 and John with 5, Brian went through.

PlayerHandicapHoops runGames won
Brian Jamieson9362
Jasmine Marsh2023
Will Watson20393
Carol Jamieson15271
Heather Hanshaw2019
John Wakeford20312
Pam Briggs20311
Chris Barnard20363
Gareth Hobby12321
Neil George16361
Sarah Weeks20281
Charles Briggs14393
Anne Small entered but had to withdraw and we wish her a speedy recovery from her knee surgery.

Jasmine Marsh sees red! Drawn first to play against Brian!

Time for a chat – size up the opposition and eat lunch.

In the final rounds Chris beat Will by 10 hoops to 9 , Charles beat Brian by 13 hoops to 10 and then Chris beat Charles 13 hoops to 9. Thanks to Anne Small donating her entry fee we managed to exceed the £125 fund raising that allows us to qualify for 2 places in the Regional Finals. Unfortunately Chris is unable to make either of the scheduled dates and so it will be Charles and Will going to Surbiton on May 5th.

Uniform and in short order

Caversham Croquet Club Clothing

Tim Leverton has kindly agreed to take over the Club clothing ordering from Carol.  The range includes new items this year, the full list is shown below. The prices include the club logo and about £1 per item to go to club funds. Be proud to wear the clothing.

It is hoped that members playing in Club matches will purchase tops and caps with the Club Logo.  Players are expected to wear whites for Club matches. Why not get other colours for when you are using the lawn out of competition?

Tim has an amazing orange polo shirt, other colours available. Be brave.

Order Forms will be on the table in the Clubhouse in the next week, so watch that space. Pictures of all the clothing will be available soon. Payment up front please, full details will be on the order forms. Orders will be sent weekly where possible and will take approximately 4 weeks.


Approx. £1 per item will go to club funds.


Honorary membership for John Pallier.

Personal Memories of John Pallier.

1993 – 25th May. Kevin (Buchanan) organized a Meeting of all interested parties at the Grosvener Hotel. Only three people turned up (Kevin, Myself, and Marjorie Turril) and apologies from Joe and Claire King, Derek Winslow, G Lawton and M Jefferies. After suitable lubrication and sandwiches organized by Kevin we set about the business of forming a Committee. I must have had too much to drink as I finished up as Treasurer, with Kevin as the Chairman. Now we really had ourselves a Club, and to make it official we decided to join the Croquet Association.

At the 2009 AGM someone decided (quite rightly) that having a treasurer who lived in Spain for 6 months of the year wasn’t a good idea and so Michael Kay took on the job.

John and Monica Pallier at Albert Road for the Club’s 30th Anniversary in June 2023.

“John has over 30 years been a pillar of the club from when it was 4 members. So, membership of the committee and the AGM were identical, and he recruited his wife Monica to act as secretary.” JW.

“He played a very active role in the early years and helped the club develop on the, then new, Caversham lawn. He was largely instrumental in the club making its first venture into competitive croquet in the Southern Federation’s AC Handicap league”. BJ.

Wear something Red.

Saturday April 13th at Albert Road.

The Charity 1-ball, now well established on the National croquet calendar and continuing into its eighteenth season, will be played this year in support of the British Heart Foundation. Competitors, as is the tradition, fashion their attire in the house colour of the chosen charity, so it’s RED for ’24. The louder the costume the better!

This fun day of 1-ball play, a hybrid of AC and GC, quick to play, easy to pick up, and as skilful and strategic as you can make it, is well supported by clubs nationally. 2 players, each with one ball, compete on a full lawn to run 12 hoops and peg out in under 40 mins. Each player is given a One Ball Handicap, calculated from either their GC or AC handicap, and gains extra strokes for running a hoop (continuation shot) and hitting the opponent’s ball (roquet and continuation shots).

If we raise £50 we can send a qualifier from our club to the regional finals on May 11th at Nottingham or Surbiton. Entries Now – to Charles Briggs on wbxenia@gmail.com. Entry fee £10 per person (going to Charity). Format of play to be decided once I know the numbers, but allow for all day play.

 A Fond Farewell.

John Walker MA, MSc, PhD, CPhys, FIET.    

5th November 1944 to 10th January 2024.

Sadly, John became ill in November whilst he and Liz were on an African Safari and he died shortly after his return to the JR Hospital, Oxford, in January.

A Service of Thanksgiving is to be held at St Peter’s Church, Earley, on Friday February 23rd at 11.30am. All CCC Members are welcome to attend the Service and are invited to a reception afterwards at the Church Hall.

A Sporting Life.

John with his wife Liz, our Hon Secretary, loved playing croquet together and have been members of the club for the last 10 years. They have a son, two daughters and five grandchildren, all of whom he adored. He continued to enjoy family holidays: skiing, sailing, and horse riding and will be sadly missed by all of us on the lawn at Albert Road.

Our Condolences go to all his family.

Feedback on the Caversham Stalker.

From Richard Carline. Croquet Academy Director of Coaching.

A visit to Caversham CC is always a pleasant experience and two days this autumn were no exception. I based the October and November coaching days on my Croquet Academy Workshop which is proving to be a very popular Course. The opening session which involved everybody being videoed from the front, side and behind when striking a ball. This was carried out with minimum fuss, but plenty of enthusiasm. The footage was played back through a TV monitor in the Clubhouse and gave everyone a chance to see themselves ‘in action’. Very few of us get an opportunity to see exactly what goes on when we play our strokes and being able to analyse these moments in both real time and slow motion can be very enlightening.

The importance of Stalking                                                                                                             

Stalking is an important part in preparing for whatever stroke we intend playing.  

Plan – Plot – Stalk and Strike is a useful breakdown to work through in order to prepare mentally and physically for that stroke.

Standing well away from the ball to be played – make a plan.                                          

Once a plan has been made, a plot line needs to be ‘seen’ and laid. This imaginary line can only be visualised from a good distance behind your (striker’s) ball.                             

At this point take time to ‘see’ the line of play and imagine the stroke to be played.                                                  

You are now ready to stalk the ball – walk the imaginary line, take your stance and address the ball.                                                                                                                                      

When all necessary adjustments to stance and swing are done – keep your head down and ‘smoothly’, strike the ball.                    

Out on the lawn a few practice routines were shown and with the video analysis in mind everyone worked on their technique.