The Greyton Country Croquet Crazies - GCCC

Our History

In 2010 Barry Wiesner and David Kuijers  acquired an old croquet set with wooden balls. On the steep slopes of a grassed farm hill outside Greyton, a country version of croquet with home rules was played by Dave and Barry. There was a tunnel, there were obstacles and a variety of shots, even snooker ones, were played. It was more like croquet putt –putt or extreme croquet than the game now played by club members. Soon Doug Murray and Tim Quinlan joined the croquet duo. In the late summer of 2013 these four decided to find out a little more about the game and ventured over the mountain to the Somerset West Croquet Club and learnt the game of Golf Croquet. They became the Founding Four of the Greyton Country Croquet Club (GCCC) and later that year the GCCC was formally constituted with six members.

The Founding Four (from left to right: Dave, Tim, Doug and Barry)

Playing in the back yards of its members, Mike Goulding very generously allowed the club to make his back yard the regular venue for the club. The club affiliated to the Western Cape Croquet Association and South African Croquet Association. Others soon joined the ranks, notably Ronnie Morrison, Jeremy O’Regan and Jenny Armstrong, the first official female member, breaking the false image of the croquet boys club. A formal constitution was drafted and a committee elected.

Two very successful open days have been held to boost membership and raise funds. The second in 2014 at the lovely Oaks Estate was attended by over 100 people. The GCCC has coached the children of Greyton House too, but without anywhere to play until the formal lawns are constructed, this has been put temporarily on hold.

Despite not having proper lawns the GCCC has over the years fared remarkably well in competition at both national and provincial levels. Membership has continued to grow, to include active members Nick Downing, June Grinton, Mieke Erasmus, Caleb Henderson, Dave Hughes, Denis Turnbull, Hedley Daniels, and Mike Moore (country  member).  Many other members have come and gone but many still retain connections to the club.

Denis and Barry are co-captains of the club, leading the team to its best season yet in the Western Cape Robinson Cup tournament. GCCC managed fourth position in the 2016/2017 season, having successfully secured last place in the two previous seasons!  A most significant improvement since over half the GCCC team only plays on proper lawns in the Robinson Cup matches.  Denis holds the title of BOSS Champion for 2016 (Best of Season Singles) for the Western Cape.

Not wanting to impose on the generosity of Mike’s back yard, the club temporarily played on the Uitkyk school rugby field, but this proved to be a difficult problem owing to the rough lawn surface, so the members have resorted to back yard play again until the first lawn is completed.  The future site of the Greyton croquet lawns has been leased for ten years from the Theewaterskloof Municipality (TWKM) alongside the bowling club. As it is below the flood line it cannot be built on, but is suitable for croquet lawns. TWKM has been very supportive in both helping the club get material for the construction base foundation needed and in clearing the land, and generous members have given both time and money.  The GCCC is most thankful and appreciative of the TWKM for this site. It is an exquisite and beautiful site for the game of croquet – World Class. Contact Denis at denisaturnbull@gmail.com or on 082 257 6990 to find out more.

Mike's backyard croquet
Please consider assisting us with our fundraising campaign that will add tremendous value to the Greyton community.

South African World Champions in the game of Croquet

In April 2013, Reg Bamford of South Africa became the first  person to simultaneously hold the title in both Association and Golf Croquet. And recently, Reg became the 2017 Golf Croquet World Champion in Palm Beach, Florida  USA. In 2015 the Women’s Golf Croquet World Champion was Judith Hanekom of Somerset West. So South African Croquet is alive and well.

Croquet Clubs in the Western Cape

There are five other Croquet clubs in the Western Cape affiliated to the Western Cape Croquet Association (WCCA). They are Rondesbosch (RCC), the oldest, founded in 1914,  Kelvin Grove (KGCC), Somerset West (SWCC), Helderberg Village (HVCC) and Fish Hoek (FHCC), all with lovely lawns. GCCC is the newest club, and we have the loveliest site by far, but without any lawns! GCCC is beginning to be influential in the Western Cape as we have a clear modernising agenda for this sport, agenda for this sport, with three core principles:

  1. Promoting the sport among children
  2. Promoting an inclusive approach
  3. Supporting the expansion of recreational facilities locally and contributing to the local tourism

The inclusive approach arises from the club accommodating players from all communities in and around Greyton, young and old, men, women, boys and girls, visitors and people with disabilities. The club anticipates being able to contribute in a small way to the growth of tourism in the area through offering a club facility and equipment for a game which can be enjoyed by families. GCCC welcomes all new members of all ages, after all the late Vernon Tomes of Somerset West represented South Africa in international competition at the tender age of 85 years old! If becoming a member and playing isn’t your cup of tea, sponsorships and donations are ways you can play your part at GCCC.  Be very wary of the 70 and 80 year old croquet competitors playing this unique and strategic game of croquet!  Consider yourself warned!