Freckly, dishevelled and forgivably nostalgic newsletter, July 2017


We have found ourselves in the middle of the most glorious summer imaginable, and boy are Hahahopscotchers having a lovely time!

First things first, let us tell you about the dates coming up this summer where you can come and play with us.

HahahopscotchAllyPally201622nd July 2017, Alexandra Palace Summer Festival, Alexandra Palace, Alexandra Palace Way, London N22 7AY
We will be leading our favourite Traditional Garden Games from 12-4pm at this fabulous all day festival. See you there!

29th July 2017, new Camden Town Brewery launch
Camden Town Brewery, Enfield, London
We are tickled pink to be providing lawn games at the launch party of the new Camden Town Brewery, hic. Admission by ticket only, available at

8-10th August 2017, Claremont Landscape Garden, Portsmouth Road, Esher KT10 9JG
4 sessions per day, £5.50 per session – booking required, via Claremont. We will be running Georgian Garden Games with the National Trust at this 18th century landscape garden.

23-24th September 2017, Fenton House Apple Weekend,
Hampstead Grove, Hampstead, London, NW3 6SP
£3.50 per child, drop in. We will be running Giggly & Greenfingered children’s gardening activities at this lovely autumnal event, growing something special to take home.

If you can’t manage any of these dates but would like to enjoy a Hahahopscotch playtime, we would love to be invited to your summer fairs, corporate events or private parties, and don’t forget that grown-ups enjoy our games almost as much as children. We love being outside on a generous grassy lawn but can squeeze into a smaller corner if needed.

BattledoreandShuttlecockNew old game alert

We have a new old game! Battledore and Shuttlecock was the precursor of badminton, much loved by folk in the 18th century. Players knock a shuttlecock between themselves using small-headed rackets … it’s surprisingly tricky but trials have shown that mini-Hahahopscotchers are getting the hang of it pretty quickly!

What have we been up to?

Since the last of these extremely intermittent emails (so much more jolly to be skipping outside than chewing our pencils at a desk), we have been having so much fun, so do let us share some of the highlights.

Our Giggly & Greenfingered gardening sessions have been super-popular, allowing us to make hundreds of new gardening friends, all of whom have taken tiny pots of horticultural joy home with them. Many thanks to Canary Wharf, where we made mini Canary Wharf gardens, Fenton House where we had a blast planting autumn bulbs, and Borde Hill where we unleashed specially spooky plant pots upon the unsuspecting children of Sussex.

We have also been delighted to take our Traditional Garden Games to some utterly gorgeous locations, such as Gatton Park in Surrey, the Alexandra Palace Summer Festival in North London (back there July 22nd – see you there), gorgeous Borde Hill in Sussex, and the Vauxhall Trust St George’s Festival. As we reach more and more 21st century urchins with these special games, will there soon be calls to make hoop rolling into an Olympic sport?

YouTube fame(ish)

We are so proud to announce that with the help of a small modern IT goblin, even us old-fashioned Hahahopscotchers have managed to get ourselves a YouTube channel. Do take a look at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoHO82XTt_-s8yHOo_V6NdA to see some of our games in action.

Got a good cause?

We’re softies at heart so offer up to 2 free sessions each year for good causes who we would love to work with but don’t have the budget for frivolities such as sack races. Last summer we were pleased to be able to donate an afternoon of Traditional Garden Games to Bohemia Walled Gardens in Hastings, who opened as part of Heritage Open Days. Do drop us a line if you have a good cause but no pennies.

Something to play at home…

I’m back off out into the sunshine now, but thought you might like to have a go at this game from the London streets of the 1960s, reported in Children’s Games with Things, by fabulous Iona and Peter Opie, which can be called Scrubby, Four Square or Fish & Chips:

“You have four square and you have four people, one standing in each. You have two people over, in case anyone is out. You draw a ring in the centre and write OUT in it, and if anyone lets the ball bounce in the ring he is out. In square 1 you write PORK, in square 2 PIE, in square 3 FISH, in square 4 CHIPS, an in square 4 you write CHAMP as well. The person in square 4 is the champ. The champ bounces the ball and hits it to someone with both hands, and that person must hit it to someone else. You have to pat the ball with two hands, not one. If the ball bounces twice in anyone’s square they are out and one of the spare people goes in and everybody moves round one square except the champ who stays in in square 4. If the champ is out then the person in square 3 is the champ.”

We hope to see you soon!

Linden x


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