Saturday, 9 October 2010

It's never too early for amazing ADVENT CALENDARS!

An amazing range of German, hand-glittered advent calenders are now available from £11.99! However, beware and be quick! We're sure they'll fly off the shelves before the countdown has even begun!

Friday, 8 October 2010

Alice in Wonderland Treasure Hunt this Half-Term at Stable Yard

Stuck for ideas of what to do with the kids this half-term? Well, even with the Summer succumbing to Winter and sunlight dwindling fast, there are still wonders to behold and adventures to be had at the location of Benjamin Pollock's new shop (Stable Yard at Hatfield House, Hertfordshire) between the 26th - 29th October 2010.

Besides a regaling of an unpublished Lewis Carroll tale, 'The Little Foxes', by London storyteller Vanessa Woolf (please see previous post for more information) on Wednesday 27th October, throughout the week the toy shop will be inviting young and old alike to take part in our exclusive Alice in Wonderland treasure hunt.... can you solve the clues, map the uncharted waters of Stable Yard and reach the ultimate goal?? Pop into the shop to begin your own, exciting quest! For more information telephone 01707258363 or email

Besides the fun to be had with Pollock's, check out what exciting goings on other Stable Yard retailers are providing! Remember, as the old saying says: Busy Hands are Happy Hands! So, why not make everyone's hands and head happy with the help of The Oak Room's Children's Craft Week: 26th - 29th October. For more information telephone 01707257175 or email

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Half-Term Fun with Storyteller Vanessa Woolf...

Benjamin Pollock's Toyshop, Hatfield, is proud to host an exclusive event featuring London Storyteller Vanessa Woolf on Wednesday 27th October 2010. From 2pm sharp, and more poignantly for FREE, Vanessa shall be regaling those gathered with a performance "Three Little Foxes". ‘The Three Foxes’ is a distinctively Victorian tale which Lewis Carroll, the "Alice" author used to tell to children. The ‘lost’ story has never been published in full, although part of it survives in his strange work ‘Sylvie and Bruno’ and was never heard read in public until Vanessa started to perform it this year. Lewis Carroll was a visitor to Hatfield House where he met a real life princess (Queen Victoria's granddaughter) called...Alice

For more information telephone 01707 258363. The storytelling performance will be approx half hour duration.

Visit the London Storyteller's website HERE and read the accompanying blog HERE...

Vanessa writes of herself:

"My first play was written when I was seventeen and resulted in me being expelled from school. Since then I have done various jobs. I have driven a lighting truck through Spain with the James Bond crew (click on the barrage balloon above to hear me talking some more about this), squelched under London in pitch-dark sewers, traded antiques and sold hot chestnuts. I am the proud guardian of four chickens, two boys and a cat. My short stories have been featured in numerous anthologies, live lit events, websites and magazines including Smoke, Tales of the Decongested, Liar's League, One Eye Grey, Litro and the Evening Standard.

I have told tales professionally in theatres, in prison, on board ship, in libraries, hospitals, forests, shops and of course, pubs. I have lots of experience working with children and I lead storytelling sessions for all ages.

“The staff were particularly impressed with the way you tailored your material for the age group (under threes)” Kintore Way Children’s Centre London SE1

Saturday, 2 October 2010

Friday, 20 August 2010

Barbican - The Surreal House

"You are invited to enter The Surreal House , a mysterious dwelling infused with subjectivity and desire." - Recommended by the BBC, The Guardian and Time Out.

Visit The Surreal House (normal tickets £10) at the Barbican and experience a labyrinth of chambers, designed by acclaimed young architects Carmody Groarke - its haunted rooms, delirious forms, blasted architecture and cinematic dreamscapes, hosting artists, designers and architects who seem inspired by some themes not too far from Pollock's own heart, utilizing in parts Victorian and traditional imagery by drawing themes that are all together light hearted, sinister, weird and wonderful into a beautifully dichotomous, albeit abstract, whole - cohesion through the most unlikely of means. Click on the link at the top of the page for more information.

We are particularly enamoured with the work of Czech animator Jan Svankmajer. Check out part one of his fantastic short-film Jabberwocky below, giving a unique, alternative representation of Lewis Carroll's wonder (if not slightly sinister) land. Porcelain dolls and dancing jumping jacks are but some of the images that give Svankmajer's work a strong 'Pollocky' feel.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Look at our cupboards!

So, we've been open 2 weeks now and everyone seems super impressed with our cupboards! Strange, but true! Then again, can you blame them?

These amazing legs and props come exclusively from the man behind - what else would you expect to be propping up a toy shop's interiors than wooden toy soldiers and princesses?!

The cabinets to which these amazing Zeel-designed wooden toys lend a hand are designed and made by Alex Hullum. Check out his website at or see recent praise on blogs such as

Friday, 13 August 2010

Old, made new! Vintage fabrics come handmade quilts

Pollock's Hatfield is the proud purveyors of these adorable, one-of-a-kind, handmade quilts devised of entirely vintage, personally sourced fabrics from the hand of Karen Orchard. At £95 they would make a welcome addition to any nursery or bedroom whilst equally serving as unique keepsakes for future generations.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

At Hatfield we LOVE Djeco!

Pollock's toy shop is no stranger to the amazing French company Djeco, whose mix of contemporary cool and artisan-style design make for an interesting and exciting line of stickers, decorations, board games and wooden, traditional toys.

Our favourite Djeco item at the moment is Bondo! An exciting balancing game available exclusively at our Hatfield shop for a mere £30!

Djeco first created the game of Bondo back in 1963. It has now been given a face lift, suitable for 1 - 4 players, each child takes a turn to place objects on Bondo the elephants back (a piece of wood, a pillow or the Maharajah). Be careful however, Bondo is not always strong enough and may collapse! A game of dexterity, concentration and motor skills that can be played alone or with up to 4 players. Suitable for children from 3 years to 6 years.

Monday, 2 August 2010

It's finally here!

The brand-new arm of Benjamin Pollock's Toy Shop!

The new shop, situated in the grounds of Hatfield House, Hertfordshire, a mere 21 miles north of London, and home to the 7th Marquess of Salisbury, acts not simply as a landmark in Pollock's history but also formulates part of an exciting development taking part within the Hatfield Estate!

Pollock's is one of eight independent, unique retailers which make up the 'Stable Yard' - rejuvenated stable buildings that form both part of the Hatfield Estate and will become a location accessible and enjoyable for all the family, independently of necessitating the Hatfield grounds and House.

So...... welcome to the beginning of what may become and grand and thrilling adventure!