Let's get board this Christmas!

Great Christmas traditions #1 - let’s get board this Christmas!

Every year as the cold snap sets in and the first hints of ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’ waft over the airwaves, fond memories of great family moments and traditions flood in. I have many happy memories of thrashing my sister at Spy Ring, of the banter associated with the Game of Life, of Monopoly games lasting several days and of never, ever getting the brown questions right in Trivial Pursuit…


Nowadays cherished ‘family time’ of old can be hard to find amidst all the gadgets and screens. This is why, since our children have been toddlers, we have upheld the great Board Game tradition…it started with an Angelina Ballerina memory game and rapidly progressed to Jenga, Kids Monopoly and Cluedo… little can beat a family game with hot chocolate in front of the fire on a cold, blustery afternoon!


This Christmas, I have set myself the challenge to support our local Lymington shops. It is too easy to be lulled into purchasing things online - last year I lost sleep waiting for things to arrive that mysteriously ‘disappeared’ in the post; I also realised that the nearer you get to 25 December, the less likely you are to actually get a bargain online, especially when you take delivery costs into account.


So, off to Lymington High Street to find out which board games are hot for 2015…

gizmo toy rooms gamesGizmo Toy Rooms, in Angel Courtyard, is an absolute treasure trove and well worth a visit. Their prices are certainly competitive with any larger retailer and also with online sellers. They will order in anything particular that they do not currently have in stock and will gladly provide you with advice on your purchases. Here are a few of their board game recommendations for Christmas 2015:


Younger Children
Memory games make a great starter game; this year Peppa Pig, Frozen and Marvel are popular. Frustration and Jenga are also exciting for younger children. Operation has been updated with a Despicable Me version - this game is great for improving dexterity.


Primary years
Monopoly is still one of the most sought after games, with a new version, Monopoly Empire (8+) proving very popular this year. Instead of houses and hotels you fill a tower with billboards. Cluedo (8+) has also received a facelift in recent years, another great favourite in our house! Battleship (7+) is another popular classic and a great way to keep children quiet for a while whilst they try to out-strategise each other!


Older Children
With the launch of the seventh film in just a few weeks, Star Wars is set to be big this Christmas. Top of the board game recommendations for older children is Star Wars Risk (10+) which lets players re-create the dramatic final moments of Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. The object of the game is to defend or destroy the Death Star. Which side will win: the Galactic Empire or the Rebel Alliance? Knowing my boys, this one will be top of the list…


Maxwell Hamilton, on Lymington High Street,  have a fantastic selection of traditional family games, including locally designed Good 2 Go Boating (8+). This unique nautical game, developed by experienced RYA instructors, tests and advances your knowledge of out and about safely on the water. From weather and knots to navigation lights and buoys. A perfect game for Lymington children!

good 2 go boating2

Maxwell Hamilton also have a wonderful selection of traditional games at a range of prices, including Backgammon, Chinese Chequers, Dominoes, Beetle Drive, Chess, Draughts, Cribbage, Shut the Box and Bingo. Perfect for any family gathering! 


Both Gizmo Toy Rooms and Maxwell Hamilton are open every day - do pay them a visit! They will both be open until 9pm for Lymington's Late Night Shopping on Friday 27th November.




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