How to play: Shut the box at Claremont Landscape Garden

A traditional game in the Thatched Cottage at Claremont Landscape Garden, Surrey

Inside the Thatched Cottage at Claremont you'll find a selection of traditional toys and games to play with during your visit. Make sure to have a go at Hazard, a game of luck played with dice for two or more players.

You will need:

'Shut the box' board, two dice (available on the table in the cottage)

Object of the game

The aim is to close down as many numbers as possible in the box. The winner is the player who manages to close down all the numbers. Any numbers remaining uncovered are counted up and the winner is the player with the lowest score.


The game board is set up with all the numbers uncovered.


The youngest player rolls both the dice on the felt base. Use the values on the dice to determine which flaps can be closed (flipped down). If, for example, the dice show 3 and 6, you have 5 possibilities:    

  • 9 can be closed
  • 8 and 1 can be closed
  • 7 and 2 can be closed
  • 6 and 3 can be closed
  • 5 and 4 can be closed

Only one or two numbers can be closed at a time.

Now the same player continues to throw the dice until either all the numbers are closed or you're unable to close any more.

Once you can't close any more numbers, the open numbers remaining are counted up as penalty points.

It's now the next player's turn to try their luck. Set up the game box again in the start position so all the numbers are uncovered.

Continue the game, with each player taking it in turns to go.

The player who has fewest penalty points at the end is the winner.

Once the game is over why not walk back through the grounds to our café? There you can relax - and hopefully celebrate - with a delicious slice of homemade cake and a drink.