Friday, 16 April 2010

Toy story at Fairlynch

I see that Fairlynch Arts Centre and Museum in Budleigh Salterton is holding a Victorian Toy Workshop for children aged 7-11 on Saturday 24 April 2010.

Noah's Ark, children's bricks, a rocking horse, cup and ball and other games long forgotten will be explained, along with a Teddy Bears' picnic.
The Museum has a large collection of toys from the era when television had not been invented and before computers took over as one of children's main entertainments. Perhaps that's because of all the Budleigh grandparents who retired here bringing their children's toys with them.

Which makes me wonder whether my son's mint-condition Millennium Falcon and assorted figures from Star Wars will one day find a home at Fairlynch Museum.

Nearly every wealthy Victorian family had a wooden Noah's Ark, with pairs of animal figures, usually made in Germany where a cottage industry grew up specialising in their manufacture, with carving skills passed down within families from generation to generation. Due to their biblical theme many were played with only on Sundays.

The cup and ball toy was one of the earliest and favourite games played by adults as well as children The toy came to England from France where it was called bilbocquet. Cups and balls range in size from about three inches in length with a tiny bead ball, to 12 to 14 inches long with a ball the size of a golf ball.

The workshop will run from 10.00am to 12.00 midday. There is a charge of £1.00 to cover materials. To reserve your place call 01395 442666.

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