It’s All Fun And Games During A Pandemic! The Rise Of Idle Games Club

Hayley: Hi Coral, can you tell me a bit about yourself and your business?

Coral: Idle Games Club is a small social enterprise looking to bring together our local community.

Located in Torbay we hope to open our own board game community store – a place where we can educate, entertain, inspire, and engage our community. We want to be more than just a game store, we want to help bring people together through fun!

Currently, we offer affordable game rentals, along with selling games through our website and running virtual sessions of Dungeons and Dragons for adults and kids.

We are working hard to create a community store and are producing a weekly blog that follows our journey in real-time, giving updates on how the store is coming along.

Hayley: What made you start your business, and what are you trying to achieve with it?

Coral: During the first lockdown, like many others my husband Mark and I were presented with plenty of time to reflect and consider our goals.

We had talked about opening a game store for many years, but never been in a position to give it a go. Suddenly we found that with COVID-19, we had an opportunity to spend time planning and preparing for it – so that’s exactly what we did!

We knew that it would be a little while before we could achieve our main goal of opening the store, so we created our website and began sourcing games – working out how we could get them to people in a COVID-safe way!

Board games can be quite expensive. They take up lots of space, and with such a wide range of games to choose from it can be hard to know which one to get! That’s why with our board game rental service, we aim to provide an affordable way for anyone to try different games.

Idle Games Club hopes to provide fun and support; an inclusive space that can bring an exciting and unique service to our local community.

Hayley: Do you have any big plans for the future?

Coral: Absolutely! We are currently searching for the perfect venue to bring our ideas to life in, and as a social enterprise, we are dedicated to supporting our local community. We have some big plans!

We want to help our community in any way we can – with wellbeing, home education, Torbay Talks, and Sensory Sensitive just some of the sessions we want to offer.

A simple board game can foster conversation, bring individuals together, offer a fantastic source of therapy, and help people build relationships, connect, and have fun!

During the last year, many people have lost touch with friends and struggled with the lack of social opportunities. We want to fix that!

Along with having a huge range of games to play, and community groups that provide fun and support, we will also offer extras like a sofa and console area, a community content library, special tournaments, and charity events.

Idle Games Club is so much more than just a game store! It’s a safe space that brings a community together.

Hayley: How have you been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting lockdowns?

Coral: Opening our space has had to be put on hold.

We started running our rental service at the beginning of the second lockdown to help people fill their time, and to provide educational games for children being homeschooled.

It has become increasingly popular, but we are looking forward to the time we can bring people together again!

COVID-19 has been at the forefront of our mind during the search for premises. We want to ensure we can bring fun to all, while being as safe as possible.

Hayley: Is there anything else you’d like to say to our readers?

Coral: We hope to bring something unique and different to Torbay.

If anyone would be interested in watching our journey, we publish a weekly blog about all our latest updates, so feel free to check it out on our website at

Hayley: How can people get in touch with you?

Coral: When we have our store, we’d love for you to pop in and chat with us about who we are and what we do!

Until then, you can visit our website to check out all the exciting games we have available to rent or buy.

We also have the Idle Games Club Facebook page, where we keep people updated on our progress, as well as any events or competitions coming up.

Lastly, if you have any other questions or just want to get in touch, you can email us at

Happy gaming everyone!

Hayley: Great. Thanks for speaking with me, Coral.

Coral Freeman of Idle Games Club was interviewed by Hayley Wetherall of QUAY Magazine
Facebook: @IdleGamesClub

Portraits by Emily Sutcliff

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