It was Mr. Jaques who brought the game of croquet to notice in England at the 1851 Great Exhibition and the game quickly became one of the leading outdoor pursuits in Victorian Britain. Its popularity spread to the Colonies - one gentleman of the time, noting in a that the game was introduced in India 'during the hot weather of 1864 at Simla' and observed that 'the Viceroy played with an entire mallet of ivory - as became his position' (J. Charlton and William Thompson, Croquet: The Complete Guide to History, Strategy, Rules and Records, New York, 1977).
Back in England, croquet was primarily an after-dinner recreation. Several firms such as R. Bliss & Co and Bussey's manufactured table croquet games in the second half of the nineteenth century. Presumably the demand for this indoor alternative was due to poor weather conditions inhibiting a passion for the sport. In 1866 'Cavendish' (pseudonym of Henry Jones) produced Improved Table Croquet: Directions and Rules, published by Parkins & Giotte.
Cavendish (1831-1899) qualified MRCS, practised as a GP until 1869 when he changed tack and became a full-time writer on games and sport. He joined the All England Croquet Club in 1869 and was instrumental in laying the foundations for the Wimbledon tennis tournament we know today. In 1875, Jones proposed that one of the club's croquet lawns should be set aside for the playing of lawn tennis, and two years later the first Lawn Tennis Championships were born.