Monday 27 February 2023

Land of Counterpane

 Saw this excellent poster near the Usher Hall in Edinburgh today-

Sunday 26 February 2023

From Norroway, from Norroway.

 A number of things just aligned- one of my regular opponents bemoaning the lack of regular troops in our VBCW games ( he just doesn’t appreciate scouts with rockets and shotgun armed shooting party not to mention the W.I) watching “Narvik” on tv and this stained glass in Abbot’s House-

So the idea came for an intervention force from Norway in the vbcw , their initial mission to take back the Northern Isles for Norway but then they got mixed up in the fighting more generally…

I looked online found the Great Escape Games Store saw some 1940 Norwegians, ordered them and they arrived very quickly, I think the next day! I just got on with them whilst listening to Scandi History podcast, appropriately enough-

It is a small but powerful force- HQ group, with medic etc, two sections with lmg and rifles, one extra tank bursting section with Molotov cocktails etc, a large mortar and spotter and finally a heavy machine gun. 
I am awaiting the mortar and tank busters but should get them on the table in time for the next scheduled game.

Saturday 25 February 2023

Terrain and a game

 Been working on the terrain today-

Drying on the radiator this morning.
Seeing what the river looked like on mat and with figures. Colour of river needs attention.
Later on played a VBCW game- Anglican League Swedish volunteers v Liverpool Free State. Close fought game over lots of fence lines. Thanks to the Mad Padre for his gift of much of the fencing. LFS lost to the AL in the end. Here are a few pictures-

Friday 24 February 2023

We went down to the river

 Trying some terrain ideas for MLS game- mdf hexes the same size as those on my mat are painted to use as a river with the banks built up with Vallejo Earth Terrain paint. Will see how they look when completed…

Thinking of using the mdf hexes to represent marsh and forest too.

Thursday 23 February 2023

Books old and new

 Been looking at these from the Ducal Library today for inspiration-

Excellent reads both of them and filled with great practical ideas for modelling . Well worth a look if you are thinking of doing some winter wargaming.

I was in Blend a.m and l picked these up from their vintage/ second hand book section-

I have been a long time Rodney Matthews fan. My teenage and early twenties bedroom featured a large Elric with dragons poster as well as having the Rodney Matthews calendar quite a few years. I do like the way the seller of the books adds these post it notes with comments and price inside each book.
Delighted with my purchases.

P.S does anyone know of any figure range with a Matthews vibe. I can’t but someone out there might know better…

Wednesday 22 February 2023

Long ago and far away…

 A photo of a demonstration game at Claymore in Adam House , Edinburgh recently sent to me by a friend. I am in it and a familiar fellow blogger. The game was The battle of Winwick Pass 1648.

Tuesday 21 February 2023

On the workbench- MLS

 Having based almost all of the 1790 big battalions l’m currently turning my attention to MLS. On the workbench are some mountain troops, an assault unit, mortar with team, anti tank rifle, officers and the newly released cavalry figures. Units to fit a hex are five/six infantry or for a cavalry unit one mounted and two dismounted. These will be used with Brian’s splendid Memories of ‘34 rules which are fun and suitably different from other games I play. Here is what I was working on today-

P.S currently working on some ideas for mountain terrain, more anon…

Monday 20 February 2023


 It is well known that after a grenzer unit mutinied it was received warmly within the Duchy of Tradgardland. The Duke generously gave the soldiers land in exchange for military service. They settled well within the Duchy and married local women, becoming popular with the local villagers due to their martial prowess and willingness to defend the borders of Tradgardland.

Sunday 19 February 2023

Artists Book Market

 Enjoyable visit to the Edinburgh Fruitmarket Gallery to see the Artists Book Market today. Terrific work on display and for sale.

Saturday 18 February 2023

East Tradgardland Troops

East Tradgardland tends to look east in many ways. For example the samovar in popular here and nowhere else in Tradgardland. Here in the photos are the Fourth and Fifth East Tradgardland regiments. As can be seen their uniforms show a distinct Russian look to them-

Friday 17 February 2023

Visitors from NZ

 The post lady brought these yesterday. They had travelled far to muster here-

Charming little boxes filled with new recruits, but who are they?Any guesses?
More on this anon…

Thursday 16 February 2023

Abbot’s House

 Yesterday saw me meeting my daughter and my sister in law for coffee in Blend, Abbot’s House. Old Brummie friends always call it the Pink House for obvious reasons. Any way it was good to be back as recent circumstances and one thing or another meant I hadn’t been for weeks. Since l was last there a vintage book section has opened with many interesting books for sale including Ladybird books.l noticed one on Napoleon l had not seen before. Lots of interesting art books too.

The window above is within the building and has a light behind to illuminate it.
Wonder why some folk know the building as The Pink House…
Anyway here is a link to the website-
Do have a look , the War Room is particularly fascinating…
If you’re ever in the area l so would recommend it for coffee and a wee wander about. It is also next door to the splendid museum-

Tuesday 14 February 2023

Norwegian Wood etc

 Some North Tradgardland, sorry Norwegian ski troops around 1900-

Monday 13 February 2023

I am your father.

 I can sleep anywhere except in bed! I doze on public transport, in cars and in places of entertainment. The warmth has something to do with it plus the motion. 

Forty three years ago I went with friends to see “The Empire Strikes Back” at the cinema. I wasn’t a big Stsr Wars fan but went along anyway. Sleep engulfed me in the latter part of the film and I never heard the iconic words of this post’s title being uttered. I awoke to the credits and the excited chatter of chums!

Last night, forty three years later, l heard the iconic words and saw the end of the film. Disney + has a lot to offer. I have been working steadily through the spin off series and am now going through the films. I have a new appreciation for the films l saw in my youth as well as appreciating those new to me- I  see something in them l never saw in my youth.

It was nice to see Bobba Fett in the film last night as I only knew him from the mini series. The Star Wars universe is captivating me at present and I am enjoying it immensely. I just wonder why it has taken me all this time to get onboard?

Sunday 12 February 2023

North Tradgardland Troops 3 - artillery support.

 The North Tradgardland ski troops ( distinguishable from Norwegians by having skis of the same length unlike Norwegian ski troops whose skis are one long and one short) are organised into two units. One is armed only with rifles whilst the other has a sledge mounted light gun as well as rifles for personal use. 

Here we see the sledge mounted gun being put through its paces on a recent training day. The gun is pulled by the men using ropes and leather straps. Extra gunpowder and shot is carried on another sledge not depicted in this illustration. In action the gun is loaded and fired by some of the unit whilst the others offer supporting fire with their rifles.
Competitions are held between different North Tradgardland villages to see which village team can haul the sledge gun the quickest and then fire it the most accurately at a target, often in the shape of a medium sized troll, painted on wooden boards.
The other ski troops compete in races over difficult distances involving skiing and rifle firing.
A nineteenth century painting depicting a medieval North Tradgardland warrior. 

Saturday 11 February 2023

North Tradgardland Troops 2 - Trollsdalregiment of Foot

 Some more 1790 figures from North Tradgardland. They are the Trollsdalregiment of Foot. Their name refers to where they are recruited from namely the Troll Valley area of North Tradgardland. They carry a North Tradgardland colour as well as the Ducal colour. Unlike most Tradgardland units they are regulars who are ready to defend their border against invaders at a moments notice. The are commanded by Colonel Ubesluttsom and Captain Usikker. Although well  trained the unit is led by less than professional officers whose vacillations unsettle the men somewhat. Here are some photos of the regiment and the uniform plate that inspired the colour scheme.

Figures painted by Northumbria Painting Services, Ducal Colour by David, other flag off the internet and felt basing by me on Warbases bases.

Hopefully a game very soon…

Friday 10 February 2023

Village people etc etc

 Wednesday saw me pass a trial without catheter at the the hospital which was good , but its removal has given me another uti. Tried to get antibiotics from the surgery yesterday but they weren’t up for. However I got some this morning after a telephone consultation with the g.p. Hopefully they will sort it out. 

Had friends round  for a game this morning but just got back in time from the gp’s then pharmacy and actually enjoyed the distraction of it. Wasn’t sure l was up to it but was.
We played VBCW once again-
Bird’s eye view of the game with cautious movement in the village .
The village people , sorry platoon , arrayed for action. Four sections, headquarters and the Scout’s rocket troop and spotter.
The village was made up of fencing from Tidders, buildings from Kev , Conflix and Airfix.