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Growth and Recruitment in Croquet

Concerns have long been expressed about perceived declining levels of competitive croquet across the country. This has often been attributed to a growth in 'social croquet', which is not confined to Golf Croquet but this variant certainly represents the greater part of the rise in non-competitive play.

In 2020 a Working Group under the Chairmanship of David Openshaw was set up to recommend an overall strategy for the development of competitive croquet in the domain; to recommend a specific strategy to revitalise Association Croquet and arrest its decline and to recommend a specific strategy to strengthen further the growth of Golf Croquet. They reported in March 2021 and the document is entitled Competitive Play Strategy - Final Report. We recommend that you have a look. It contains many challenging proposals for Federations and Clubs as well as for Croquet England itself.

The Ways Forward Identified in 2021

For more details see the Competitive Play Strategy - Final Report

Making Your Club Welcoming

A comprehensive report Improving inclusivity and diversity in croquet was published in 2021. There are many recommendations to help remove barriers for different people and there are specific recommendations for clubs. The key to success is to try and tackle one, or at most two, of these at a time, probably after making a list in order of ease, priority or importance to the club. A good starting point to help you make your initial list is given in 'Opening Doors on Croquet - Asking tricky questions.

Share your success (or maybe your shortcomings) by writing an article for the Gazette or eNews so that other clubs can learn. Some examples are printed in Gazette: Issue 253. Then have a go at removing barriers for the next group on your list.

The 2022 Survey of Croquet Players also provides some insights. The Executive Summary and the free text comments on inclusivity and diversity (page 101) may provide useful ideas.