– By Gemma Francis
School holidays, birthday parties and having someone else cook your meals, are among the things adults miss most from their childhoods, a study has found.
Playing with Lego, the Sega Mega Drive and sitting down with a huge toy catalogue to write birthday and Christmas wish lists are also among the things people miss.
Having a friend around for tea, Roald Dahl books and having cereal like Coco Pops or Golden Nuggets for breakfast instead of muesli or porridge also made the list.
A poll of 2,000 adults revealed 67 per cent yearn for their younger years with four in 10 admitting they consider them to be the best time of their lives.
Interestingly, researchers found some differences between the generations, with baby boomers admitting they long for the days of Enid Blyton books, Meccano and collecting stickers.
Millennials, however, miss watching SMTV Live on a Saturday morning, playing on computer games consoles and being given party bags.
It also emerged 58 per cent of adults think it was better to be a child ‘back in the day’ as they had less of a reliance on technology to have fun.
Liz Penney, spokesperson for Hollywood Bowl which commissioned the research said: “For many of us, our childhood marks a time of lots of fun and little responsibility leaving us with plenty of things to miss now we are grown up and have adult lives to lead.
“And that’s the beauty of having children – being a parent gives you an opportunity not only to relive some of the things you miss from your childhood, but also to watch as your own children experience them.
“Bowling is an ideal opportunity to create memories with your children doing something you loved as a child, and has the added benefit of meaning you don’t miss it as an adult.
“Whilst bowling has been popular for many generations, we’ve totally modernised our centres and have something to keep everyone entertained, whether it be bowling, arcade games or even a meal at our American style diner.”
Having weeks off school during the holidays was named the thing people miss most about their childhoods followed by hot summers, playing outside until the streetlights came on and not having to work.
Spending time with parents came fifth, along with family holidays and playing on the swings.
Having someone else to cook your meals for you, buying penny sweets which really did cost 1p and weekends with no chores or errands to run completed the top 10.
Other aspects adults miss include celebrating childhood birthdays or going to birthday parties, having sleepovers and playing arcade games.
TV shows also feature in the list, with many looking back fondly on programmes such as ‘Live and Kicking’, ‘Sabrina the Teenage Witch’ and ‘Knight Rider’.
Going bowling, having inflatables in the swimming pool and ball pits are also among the top 50.
The results showed some differences between the genders though with men more likely to miss the days of playing Bulldog, arcade games and collecting stickers, and women more likely to long for the days of sleepovers, having friends around for tea and birthday parties.
The study, carried out via OnePoll.com, found 49 per cent would like to be able to relive their younger years, with the age of nine considered to be the best.
Almost half even plan to encourage their children to do some of their favourite things from when they were younger so they can share it with their offspring.
Liz Penney, added: “It’s interesting to see that half of the respondents plan on sharing their favourite childhood experiences with their children.
“The good news is, at Hollywood Bowl, we pride ourselves on being a great place for the whole family to spend quality time together.”
Top 50 things people miss from their childhood:
1. School holidays
2. Hot summers
3. Playing outside with friends until the streetlights came on
4. Not having to work
5. Spending time with your parents
6. Family holidays
7. Going on the swings
8. Having someone else cook your meals
9. Penny sweets
10. Weekends with no errands or chores to do
11. Having someone else wash your clothes
12. Celebrating your birthday as child
13. Having a friend around to play/for tea
14. Other people’s birthday parties
15. Getting money from the tooth fairy
16. Pocket money
17. Enid Blyton books
19. Having milk delivered to your door
21. Writing a Christmas/ birthday list from a toy catalogue
22. Playing football in the park for hours
23. Break time
24. Water fights
25. Making daisy chains
26. Playing Tag
27. Collecting stickers
28. Party bags
29. Playing Bulldog
30. Playing arcade games
31. Playing Stick in the Mud
32. Roald Dahl books
34. Sega Mega Drive
36. Sabrina the Teenage Witch
37. SMTV Live
38. Space hoppers
39. Live and Kicking
40. Going bowling
41. Inflatables in the swimming pool
42. Eating Coco Pops and Golden Nuggets for breakfast instead of muesli or porridge
43. Slush puppies
45. Ball pools
46. Nintendo 64
47. Soft play
49. Knight Rider
50. Macaroni cheese