Cottesmore's Conker Guide
Cottesmore School
Cottesmore News

Cottesmore's Conker Guide

What do I need? 
  • A Conker
  • 2ft of string
  • An object to pierce the conker (like a screwdriver)
  • A pig (you’ll understand if you read the whole article)
Choosing your conker
  • Make sure your conker has no cracks in it.
  • Drop the conker in water, if it sinks it’s a good one because it is heavy/ dense.
  • Symmetrical ones may be better.
Making the hole
Be careful! This is the tricky bit. If you are younger, ask an adult or an older brother or sister to do it.
Push a screwdriver, or similar object, into the top and twist it so it goes the whole way through (don’t use your hand to press onto!) Blow down it, to get rid of the excess so that the string will thread through easily.
Thread the string
Thread the string, through the hole. Tie a knot so that the string doesn’t pull through - you may have to tie many knots on top of each other so that it becomes big enough not to pull through the conker.
Let’s play conkers!
  • Two players take turns at hitting each other’s conker. 
  • Whoever breaks their opponents conker first wins.
  • The non-striker holds the string so that the conker hangs down about 1 ft. It must be held perfectly still.
  • The striker then wraps the string around their hand so that the string is short.
  • Then the hitter tries to hit the opponents conker with their own
  • Next your opponent, the striker, wraps their conker.
  • Releasing the conker we now wait and see if they make contact with your conker.
  • “Strings” If the strings tangle, the first player to shout out “strings” gets an extra go.
  • “Around the world” - If a player hits their opponents conker in such a way that it completes a whole circle after being hit – known as ‘round the world’ – the player gets another go.
  • “Stamps” - if a player drops his conker, or it is knocked out of his hand the other player can shout ‘stamps’ and jump on it; but should its owner first cry ‘no stamps’ then the conker, hopefully, remains intact. You can agree not to play with stamps at the beginning of the match.
  • Winning - the game goes on in turns until a conker is broken and falls off the string the winner.
“A One-er” - if you have beaten one opponent with your conker, you conker is a ‘one-er’, if you have beaten two people with that same conker, it is a ‘two-er’ (if it is the conker’s first match, it is a ‘none-er’)
However, if you are playing someone whose conker is a ‘twelver’, for example, and you win, you may add this score of twelve to you own score.
Good luck and happy conkering!
Other conker notes
You may have heard myths of people ‘preparing' their conkers. Here are some of the ways some people try to take the advantage:
  • Cook the conker in the oven for 1.5 minutes.
  • Store your conker in an airing cupboard for 1 year
  • Put them in nail varnish remover and leave them for a day
  • Varnish the conker
  • Have your pig eat the conker. The stomach acid will toughen the conker and, when the pig passes the conker, you wash it, drill a hole in it and start conquering.


Please send us your comments about our website. It's brand new and we'd love to know what you think!

Parents Area!

Behind the scenes info from Cottesmore
Cottesmore school