Generation game: youngster challenges 97-year-old to 2 Way Words tournament

Youngster Charlie Pelling challenged a near-centenarian to a literal generation game, after reading the age guide on the side of a board game’s box.

When he saw that the age guide on his favourite word game said ‘from eight to 108’, Charlie told his dad Derek that he would like to challenge a 108 year-old to a match, to see who would win.

And while a 108-year-old proved to be a bit of a tall order, 97-year-old word game fan Ruby Hill invited him to her care home in Maids Moreton, Bucks, to prove that age is just a number.

“I loved the idea of playing against a really old person to see whether they had more experience than me, and Ruby gave me a tough match. I loved playing the word game against Ruby and I think we both did really well,” says Charlie.

While there wasn’t a clear winner, Ruby certainly gave Charlie a run for his money during the game of 2 Way Words at Gracewell Care Home where she lives.

Ruby’s daughter Judith, 54, says: “My mum has always been an avid reader and still loves to do crossword puzzles every day. She loves Countdown and other quiz programs and until recently enjoyed challenging her grandchildren to Scrabble and taking part in the Christmas afternoon tradition of a game of Monopoly.

“She hopes to still be doing crosswords when she gets to 100.”

The 2 Way Words game is the brainchild of Shaun Delaney, 64, and the inventor says that he believes his game – a cross between Battleships and Scrabble – can bridge the generation gap this Christmas.

“Everyone loves a word game, and 2 Way Words is a lot of fun with lots of ways to eliminate your opponent,” he says. “It was so lovely to hear about Charlie’s challenge, and how nice that he took the age guide on the side of the box so seriously!

“During the pandemic we have spent a long time away from elderly relatives and friends, so I was pleased to hear this 2 Way Words match brought the generations together.”

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About Tessa Clayton

A former Chief Sub of Red magazine, Tessa Clayton is the Digital Editor of and ToyNews. As a freelance journalist she specialised in writing about parenting and family life, and has contributed to a wide variety of publications and websites including Tesco online, Mother & Baby, Livingetc, Junior, Boots Health & Beauty, Practical Parenting and Get in touch at

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