see also George Sims in Living London - click here
I took half an hour after dinner last night, on my way to the office, and looked in at the Royal Aquarium to watch the big ping-pong tournament. There was a crowd around the eight tables. Some of the play was shocking. I could have done better on a kitchen table. The best work was done by Roper Barrett, the tennis player, who defeated Launceston Elliott. Mr. T. Jeffries was eventually declared the winner over all. The Aquarium was terribly cold and draughty in this dreadful wintry weather. Two rival ping-pong associations are now in full swing, and it threatens to become one of the national pastimes.
R.D.Blumenfeld's Diary, December 11, 1901