Friday 31 December 2021

Moving towards Midnight…

 The new year begins in just over twelve hours here in Tradgardland. I have never liked new year, even as a youth. My mother  ( who would have been 90 on the 28th and died in her 80th year) into her seventies would always “ See in” the new year even on her own. She would sit up watching tv with a sherry and a piece of shortbread. She came from a Leith family who loved new year parties, singing round the piano and celebrating. Her mother threw open the windows at midnight and observed First Footing religiously. I have not taken after her. I will be glad to go to bed , be woken by fireworks at midnight and then sleep my way into 2022. 

Anyway onto the state of the nation address aka what’s on the workbench-

Some 54mm retro spacemen for skirmishes, some Fife and Drum militia to face Hessians in the awi, eighteenth century civilians to adorn the table top as vignettes and some creatures to use with The Silver Bayonet. 
I bought far too much lead and paper in the past year, much remains unread or unpainted, not even out the box/packet. After midnight l intend to spend far, far less from the Ducal war chest. Some items are in the post but that’s it. Ha, we shall see how long that lasts!
Some lead I will get professionally painted, some I will endeavour to do myself.
I hope 2022 will have some face to face gaming once more, a continuation of being inspired by the blogs of others/ the VWC and perhaps shows to attend. Regardless I want to work away at restoring old unloved broken lead and some shiny new stuff too. 

Seeing things differently

 When l look at a Wargames figure l tend to see it as a miniature representation of say a Napoleonic soldier in his uniform. You know what I mean !

I found it liberating and fascinating to read that Peter Young “ dressed his Electoral Army in the uniforms of the Seven Years War but we make it clear that our rules are based on the practice of the Late eighteenth century.”

I like this idea very much. Of course there are precedents like the 1730s Janissary Guard in the Saxon Army l already alluded to in a previous post. They are not Janissaries but Saxons dressed as them. A conceit, a wizard wheeze, call it what you may. It adds fun to the table top l think.

So in the spirt of this yesterday I sent off to Tradition of London for some Willie figures to represent men dressed as the Lord Admiral’s Regt of the 1660s for my Charge games. I just couldn’t resist the Brigadier’s  great idea. 

Here are some sources for my costume design-

Thursday 30 December 2021

What next?

 The table has been cleared and the snowballers  returned to barracks until the end of November 2022. What next? Suggestions please…

Wednesday 29 December 2021

Raising the Lord Admiral’s Regt of the reign of Charles ll in 1968

 Been pondering this today. As far as I am aware the only option available to the Brigadier in 1968 in 25mm figures would have been- 

The range of musketeers and pikemen made by Warrior Minatures of Glasgow or 

The Willie Tangier figures by Edward Suren.

Unless you know otherwise…

P. S what about the Janissary figure options too?

Tuesday 28 December 2021

From Miniature Warfare April 1968

 I am very indebted to Ronnie for the below article-

Fascinating and news to me. I wonder if the Janissaries or Charles ll unit appeared on the table top ?

Monday 27 December 2021

Charge question

 It is Boxing Day’s Boxing Day and a Wargamer’s fancy turns to Peter Young’s “Charge” rules…

I wonder if there is a story as to why the Brigadier chose the units he did and mixed them in terms of time and space- syw with napoleonic etc. It is an attractive idea , a veritable Pick n Mix equivalent for wargamers!  One I am attracted to greatly.

So anyone know the background to his decisions or should l read the text even closer?

Boxing Day and books…

 Sitting room 09:30 Boxing Day-

Here are the books and lead received as Christmas gifts this year, l am most fortunate-

Friday 24 December 2021

Late 18 th Century Winter uniform

 1780s Swedish winter uniform-

Looks eminently practical to me 

Margaret Tarrant..

 I knew of her work as a child and liked it. I still do as an an adult. Years ago I helped out the local Brownie pack on some occasions. The woman who ran the pack always sent me a Tarrant card when she wrote to thank me. I liked the juxtaposition of the real with the fantastic. Here are some of her beautiful illustrations including simple but moving nativity scenes-


Thursday 23 December 2021

Pehr Hilleström

 Interesting paintings of late 18th century Sweden. A masque/tournament and some battle pictures, all painted by Pehr Hillestrom-

Wednesday 22 December 2021

Aliens etc

 There has been interesting chat here of late-

and here- 

I basically fancy doing some games based around invasions of earth in the nineteenth century. Today whilst in the shed using the tumble drier l went searching for these . I have had them for ages but done nought with them. So after a few boxes moved and lifted here they are-

Tip top alien options I say!  I have decided to start on a few as time permits…

A furious visitor part two

 The tomte has struck! He has changed the turkeys into Dodos. They escaped into the woods leaving a gap in the menu for tonight’s formal dinner.

Tuesday 21 December 2021

A furious visitor…

 In the evening a small figure with a red hat comes unseen into the Hall. He hopes that they have remembered to put out porridge, with a little butter, for him. He looks around , finds nothing and plots revenge on the Big People. Ha , he thinks , I have a plan…


Sunday 19 December 2021


Night is falling in Albion. The lamplighter goes about his daily business. The Watch patrol with their new lanterns. The stars come out in the velvet sky.

Little do they know that in the woods figures are hiding, intent on providing a snowball surprise to their comrades in arms…

Saturday 18 December 2021

Swedish riflemen and goblins for The Silver Bayonet

 Been working on some figures for The Silver Bayonet today. The riflemen are Perry miniatures whilst the goblins are GW snotlings possibly? They came as part of a job lot and l know nothing really of their origins. The bow figures sits nicely on a garden pebble and two others hide behind similar. We shall see what happens when the riflemen encounter them…

A little later in the day and they have moved forward nicely in spite of the Cricket from Australia!


 I had eagerly anticipated volume three of this series which I preordered via Amazon. It was due today. The third volume was to relate to the Norwegian Army as well a volunteer units from Norway and Denmark as well as the unusual artillery ( on skis) in Norway. A veritable box of delights to one who has been collecting scraps of information on these topics or nearly thirty years. On looking on the Helion website I see volume three will appear in the Spring 2022 catalogue. Sigh. I guess l just need to be patient.

Friday 17 December 2021

The Portable Fantasy Wargame

 The men of the town have decided to exercise their authority over the local forest. The residents of the forest are not happy about it. Wolves and bears have gathered to defend their territory accompanied by a giant who has turned up too. 

Thursday 16 December 2021

Nigel Slater and wargaming

 Yesterday I was watching “Nigel Slater’s Christmas Suppers “ on television. He is an excellent food writer and cook. One part of the programme dealt with him pouring over seed catalogues with a view to what he would grow in Spring and Summer. He was surrounded by catalogues and made many notes in his journal about his intended buys . He looked eagerly forward.

Sadly l cannot reveal that Slater is a wargamer but he did get me thinking of the days when we wargamers poured over catalogues too. Real physical paper ones- glossy and picture rich Airfix and list centred Minifigs. Amateurish lists hastily typed and photocopied yet worth their weight in gold to us.Yes we can access information online but the joy of thumbing through hobby catalogues was great, not to mention the eager anticipation of them coming through the letterbox.

Snow was falling,snow on snow…


Wednesday 15 December 2021

Antietam continues

 Antietam continued today. My Iron Brigade are making for the Confederates defending the sunken road. Along the way casualties are mounting. The game finished for the day with both sides gaining reinforcements. Hopefully the game will be played to a conclusion next week.