UK games retailer's generous donation boosts Lawn Manor Academy's board game club

By Jessica Durston - 15 March 2022

EducationSecondary
  • Lawn Manor Academy students pictured with the trust's Chair of Governors Nathan Coombs and Lawn Academy's Library Officer Rachel Reynolds holding some of the games which have been donated by Zatu Games

    Lawn Manor Academy students pictured with the trust's Chair of Governors Nathan Coombs and Lawn Academy's Library Officer Rachel Reynolds holding some of the games which have been donated by Zatu Games

Board games enthusiasts at Lawn Manor Academy were given a boost when a leading UK games specialist donated a huge box of strategy games to the school.

Lawn Manor Academy students Katie & Eifion pictured with the trust's Chair of Governors Nathan Coombs holding some of the games which have been donated by Zatu Games

Lawn Manor Academy, which is part of the Royal Wootton Bassett Academy Trust, has a board games club which meets every week in the school’s library.

The trust’s Chair of Governors, Nathan Coombs, is a long-time player of board games, and also writes game reviews for the retailer Zatu Games.

Consultant surgeon Nathan said: “I’m a huge fan of board games, and have managed to pass that love onto my children, too.

“Board games can be tremendously valuable in terms of engaging young people in more complex skills that will be very useful to them throughout life – including planning, strategy, team-building and negotiation.

“For a large number of pupils at Lawn Manor Academy, English is their second language, and some word-based games, such as Bananagrams, can help build vocabulary and aid spelling.

Mr Coombs said he knows that Zatu Games do a lot to help children, including donating board games to children’s wards in hospitals, so he asked them if they could donate anything to Lawn Manor Academy’s club.

He added: “Zatu said they would love to help, and asked me what type of games we would like. As it’s a school club, the games needed to be suitable for teenagers, with minimum set-up, and minimal small components, so anything that’s dropped doesn’t get lost in the large library.

“They really came up trumps with a huge box of 20 games that must be worth many hundreds of pounds. When I opened the box I was delighted with their selection – it’s got every game that I’d want to get people fired up about gaming.

"It includes Ticket to Ride, which involves strategic planning of routes in or around the London underground, Splendor, which involves competing to build the most valuable gem collection during the Renaissance in Europe, and Forbidden Island, where players cooperate to escape from an island that is sinking.”

Lawn Manor Academy library officer Rachel Reynolds, who runs the board game club, said the donation by Zatu Games is a fantastic addition to the club’s collection.

Rachel said: “The board games club is very popular with pupils and we are so grateful to Zatu Games for this incredibly generous donation

“Board games are first and foremost great fun, and a good way of socialising, but we see pupils developing lifelong skills as they play more and more games at the club. This gift of 20 games boosts our collection hugely, and I know the pupils can’t wait to try them out for themselves."

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