Playing cards
What is it?     What you need     Getting started     Find out more


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What is it?

  • There are a vary large number of different card games that can be played, either just for fun and to pass the time, or more seriously and even as a competitive activity. 

  • Some games like patience and solitaire are just for one person, others are for two or more people.  The better known of the latter, like bridge, whist and cribbage are long established hobbies.  

  • More details of them and other games can be obtained from the various specialist organisations listed below.  Many card games are highly sociable and there is sometimes an important  competitive element.

Find out more


Card Games
English Bridge Union
International Playing-Card Society



Getting started

  • Find a local group or club that plays the kind of card games that interest you (see organisations above).

  • Take a class or course at your local adult education centre or see if your local group runs introductory sessions.

  • Consult books or magazines on different types of card games.

  • Check in your local library/paper or education centre for more information.

What you need

Skills and people
  • Cards can be played by people of all ages and both sexes.  Many games are quite easy to pick up though there is much skill involved in playing games like bridge and whist at a high level. 

  • Some types of card playing can easily be done at home on your own.  But many games require more than one person, and most people enjoy the stimulus and social contact of belonging to a card playing group of some kind.  

  • This can be a group of family or friends or a more formal local group, that meets on a more or less regular basis.  Such groups also organise competitive events from time to time.  

  • The people you play with will often not be the same age or sex as yourself, though it helps if they have roughly the same level of skill in playing.

Equipment or clothing
  • An appropriate set of cards is the key essential, plus some means of scoring (pencil and paper is often adequate).  

  • Specially covered card tables are used by serious players.

A place or facilities
  • No special facilities are needed.  Groups usually meet at members' homes, or in a local hall or room.

Have a go - get started now

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