Rare Georgian toy discovered at Peckover House

WHEN you clean out your cupboards, you may expect to find a few half forgotten items hidden away, but you wouldn’t normally hope to find a rare and fascinating 18th century box game.

But that is exactly what happened at the National Trust’s Peckover House in Wisbech, and the rare spelling game is about to take pride of place in the property for visitors to view.

Volunteers from Peckover and members of the National Association of Decorative and Fine Arts Societies were carrying out a routine inventory check in a rarely used storage cupboard, when they found the educational toy which was created in 1780 by author Ellenor Fenn..

A check of records showed that the existence of the box had been previously recorded, but it’s historical value and rarity has only now been realised.

Ben Rickett, House Manager at Peckover House, said: “It turns out that it is one of only five known spelling boxes in the country, which makes it a very exciting find. It also appears to be a complete example in very good condition.”


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A new exhibit is being set up in Peckover House from Monday September 3, so that visitors will have the chance to look at this rare and early spelling game. The house is open from 1pm to 5pm, Saturday to Wednesday, with last admission to the house at 4.30pm.

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