To share Toys: the once and future King, you will need:

Seasonal essential oils

A piece of mournful music

For the story about toys in particular you will need:

Toys from different stages of life

A large box or blanket

For the story about King Arthur in particular you will need:

A heavy green/grassy blanket

Ale! (Or an alternative feasting taste)

Jousting lances - these can be made from coloured paper and card, or fabric.



"I work with adults with profound disabilities. We are always looking for interesting and meaningful things to do with them....please send us Toys: the once and future king."

Introduction to Toys: the once and future King

Toys provide an insight into history: we can compare the toys we play with today with the toys we played with when we were younger, and we can look back into history to see what toys were played with in the past. Toys are of interest to people of all ages.

Our experiences of toys have something in common: we all have favourite toys, we all reach a point when toys get put away to make way for other things in life, and we all enjoy remembering the joy toys brought us, and perhaps revisiting them from time to time.

I have wanted to write a story about toys for a long time, but I did not want to write about just one toy, or one sort of experience. I wanted to write a story for everyone, not just for people who liked skateboards, or dolls, or whichever toy I happened to choose for the story. Inspiration came when I received the sage advice: "you mean toys are like the once and future king."

The legends of King Arthur speak of a king who battled for good against evil. A king who did not die, but who, when age came upon him, went with his knights, to rest beneath a green hill and lie in wait in case England should ever face a time of great peril and need him again. If we look back through British history at times of struggle we find people with Arthurian spirit who rose up and fought against the evils they perceived for the good they hoped for. 

The toys we played with in childhood shaped who we became. Although we put those toys away, on shelves, or gone entirely, passed on to younger siblings, donated to charity shops, and so on, the things they taught us as we grew never leave us. The strength we built through play is there for us to draw upon in times of struggle in our lives. And we can play again whenever we choose.

I ended up writing one story twice, or two stories which dovetail together. You can share one, or the other, or both, for a historical sensory journey.

I hope in sharing the stories you are filled with fond memories of childhood adventures, and relish the opportunity to play again.