When I was growing up in the 60's Pancake Day was always a large pancake the size and thickness of a pizza now. It would be fried in a frying pan which was well used with ridges and the pancake always had these ridges printed on the pancake sometimes slightly burnt which made them taste nicer. I would have this with either jam, lemon or orange juice and sugar. After one of these there was no room for anything else.
Around Pancake Day we would always buy whip and tops. The whip was about 18 inches long with a leather thong threaded at the top with a knot. With this we chose a top which we would whip with the thong. We always used to take out the leather thong and swap it for a shoe lace which we frayed at the whipping end to give the top extra spin. We would have the choice of a carrot top or spinning top (mushroom shaped) with a long stem. Both these tops had a screw at the bottom to spin on.
I would always go for the spinning (mushroom) top as it went further when whipped.
We also decorated them with chalk and drawing pins to personalise them as when we played with them in the school playground it would differentiate between the dozens of tops.
I only remember playing with them around Pancake Day perhaps because the evenings had got lighter and we could play with them after school.
We do not see them now but great fun at the time.