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Caterham Croquet Club - founded 1986

In January 1986. David Higgs of Reigate Croquet Club took the first steps in setting up a club in Caterham and a successful open session was held in May on an area of turf prepared by our current Groundsman, Graham, in a corner of the cricket outfield in Queen's Park.

Efforts to locate a second lawn in the park were initially unsuccessful so, in 1991 the Club hired a disused doubles tennis court in Coulsdon Memorial Park from Croydon Council. This allowed for more club play and outside matches but the storage of equipment, vandalism and the logistics of the District Council and the Cricket Club proved to be problematical. Therefore, a second lawn was laid in Queen's Park adjacent to the first lawn. The Clubhouse - originally the Council employees' mess room and then a junk storage area for cricket, tennis and basketball gear, with croquet equipment squeezed into a corner - was cleared and refurbished and leased to the Club at the same time.

The old lawns could only be used during the summer months, so the council was persuaded to allow the club to use an area in front of the Pavilion, giving the club continuity through the winter months.

Plans were then made to have two lawns inside the Circle in front of the Pavilion. These were financed by donations from club members, and grants and assistance from various bodies*. This generosity allowed us to have the area levelled and new lawns laid with a modern rye grass. This means the lawns can be used through the winter as long as the weather is not too bad.

The names of several original members of the club are still remembered in aspects of today's club. The Higgs lawn remembers the founder. Among the club's trophies are the Ted Kemp Memorial Bowl (for Association doubles, named after the first Chairman), the Parsons Cup (for Association Level Play, named after Keith and Doreen), and the Simcocks Cup (for Golf Singles, named after John and Ilse).

* The Club would like to thank the following organisations who helped create the new lawns.

Croquet Association

Surrey County Council

Tandridge District Council

Fields in Trust

South East Croquet Federation