Mary Gosling, along with her husband Graham, has built a thriving business around their design led games.
Mary grew up in West Cork where, at the age of 19, she opened a tea room for summer visitors overlooking the beach near her family home. Mary’s excursions over to London to work during the winter months brought her and Graham together.
While bringing up their children in West Cork, Graham and Mary ran a guest house welcoming visitors from all over the world. Evenings were often spent discussing their guests’ travels and helping to plan itineraries for the following day. Out of that experience grew their first game, ‘Discovering Ireland’. Launched in 1987, it became the best-selling family board game that Christmas in Ireland, and is still one of their top sellers today.
Since giving up the tea house to expand her business, Mary never lost sight of her passion and, seeing an emerging trend for baking, decided to incorporate this into Gosling Games’ new range. Collaborating with artist Courtney Davis from Dorset, Mary developed the “Make it! Bake it!” collection of cupcake puzzles and greeting cards which is now being showcased in the UK. The puzzles reveal delicious recipes for both cookies and cupcakes, complete with a beautiful tin for storage, while the greetings cards offer a recipe on the back.
A recent addition to the Gosling Games range is a traditional Ring Board. While the wooden game design looks great as a piece of retro memorabilia, it is also fantastic for improving hand-eye coordination. This is important to Mary and Graham, as Gosling Games strives to produce products that are aesthetically pleasing as well as mentally stimulating.
Mary said: ‘We always try to invent games that will make participants think or learn something as well as have fun. We test every idea on our own family and friends first. Believe me, if there’s anything wrong with the prototype of a new game, we hear about it from the gang when they are all clustered around the kitchen table trying it out!’
Gosling Games is a thriving family-run business with their roots firmly based in West Cork.
Gosling Games are available in quality toy stores including Smyths Toys across Ireland & the UK, and is now selling in The Loop, Cork Airport.