Monday 20 May 2024

The Relief of Norchester at Partizan - all the Gabions in the World!


Here is Norchester- a town well fortified, now, with its new line of modern defences. The medieval walls are now partially protected by trenches, two horn works and the famous Bishop's Bastion.

The siege lines have expanded, too. Next outing I hope to have a tented camp to stand alongside the baggage train.


Above and below, the battle from behind the Parliamentarian lines; left and centre.


... and the right. Here, the Parliamentarian cavalry triumphed- Prince Rupert had to leap a hedge to seek the somewhat illusory protection of a unit of Royalist forlorn hope!



Above, the normally sleepy village of Soggy Bottom. The impious crophead dragoons have stabled their horses in the churchyard! And finally, below, a short video of the battlefield.


Partizan was a fine event, as ever- very well organised, indeed, a well-oiled machine. There were some super games of which my favourite was Aughrim, which I'd have watched all day, if I'd not been a tad busy. That Omaha Beach game looked most impressive, and the Bodkin's Roman vs. Sassanid game, and others. It was super chatting with so many people, at least five re-enactors pointed out their regiments on the table. A terrific show!

Tuesday 16 April 2024

The Relief of Norchester at Salute 51


Here are some super photos of the Relief of Norchester game that my friends helped me take to Salute last weekend. The photos were taken by chum Ian Notter. Above is a shot of the parliamentarian Great Battery, which had just commenced its bombardment of the eponymous city.

...and here is the city Norchester, itself. You will be able to make out the tall buildings of the Flemish merchants' quarter (Norchester exports wool to the Low Countries), and the bombardment has already damaged the ancient bell tower of St. Andrew's church. Beyond the city is Norchester Great Wood.


The other end of the battlefield is defined by the Bishop's Wood. Above and below, there was a massive cavalry clash on this wing, with over 300 horse in 15 regiments fighting to more or less mutual destruction. We used the For King and Parlaiment rules to fight the battle, everyone picked them up and it ran smoothly.


On the other wing, above, Hesilrige's heavily-armoured lobsters (right foreground) held the Parliamentarian left flank throughout the day, resisting numerous charges!


And finally here is a view down the battlefield showing many of the 27 foot battalia that were engaged. The battle was extremely close- the Royalists were behind most of the day, and down to four medals just after lunch, but managed to squeak a narrow victory an hour later, forcing the parliamentarians to lift the siege!


Above is a brief video that I shot before the event.


...and I was delighted to win an award for the game- best 25/28mm game, second year in a row!

I'd like to thank everyone who helped m to deliver the project, particularly Ian Notter who helped a great deal with the modelling and advice, as well as the photography. Huge thanks to those who played on the day and helped me to engage with the public- especially FK&P stealth co-author Andrew Brentnall. Also thanks to everyone who dropped by for a chat, and apologies to anyone I didn't manage to talk to- it was insanely busy. And finally a big thank you to the South London Warlords who, as ever, did a fantastic job running the event.


I will be taking the game to Partizan next month. If you'd like to play, please drop me a line. In the meanwhile, the brave citizens intend to bolster the defences of Norchester with some state-of-the-art renaissance fortifications, to be erected in front of the medieval walls.

Friday 1 March 2024

All the New Horse


I've recently, with the big Salute game in mind, added just over 100 new 28mm cavalry to my ECW armies. Around half the minis are from eBay purchases, retouched, and the remainder were painted by the hard-working Shaun McTague. I finished and based all the minis, and chum Ian Notter flocked them all. They still need tufts and flags. Around a half are Renegades, the rest are Bicornes.


Above and below, there are 54 "Dutch" horse in six 3-deep troops, some of these are cuirassiers, acting as lifeguards for the generals.



...and above and below, there are another 54 minis in three Swedish regiments of 18. These will all be Royalists.


This will give me just over 500 beautifully painted cavalry in the Salute game- around twelve regiments a side, plus three lifeguard troops. I am striving to achieve a historical ECW ratio of horse to foot-  I should have 1:2.5 or so on the day.  

...in other news I added some more items, including magnetic basing materials, to the flash sale in the BigRedBatShop

Thursday 29 February 2024

New Regiments of Foote

I'm running a big ECW game at Salute, and intend to add six or so new foote battalias to my armies. Above are the first two, painted and part based, and below is a third. By chance, these three are almost entirely Renegades, with a few Bicornes added. Shaun McTague painted around half of them, and the remainder are from judicious eBay purchases. I've highlighted and am basing them. Two of the units will be Royalists from the Oxford Army, clad in cloth recently looted from the warehouses of Bristol, and natty montero caps.

If you'd like to play in the big Salute game for an hour or so, please drop me an email.


In other news, I've added a few more items to my BigRedBatShop flash sale of battle mats, bases and chits.  The cloths are reduced by 10% or more, and the bases and chits by up to 50%.

Wednesday 28 February 2024

Saint Hunna's chapel

 

The chapel from the previous post is now mostly restored- I just need to highlight the roof tiles, lichen on the tiles and the lead-clad spire. It scrubbed up really well! I sculpted a door and step to make it appear convincingly 28mm. I think it might well be the oldest model in my collection. There's a "before" photo, below.

The chapel is now named St. Hunna's, after the patroness of laundry workers and laundresses, reflecting it's origin in the Middleton Road, Bounds Green laundry!

In other news, I have just put a load of mats, chits and bases on sale, just for a few days. You can find them here.

Friday 23 February 2024

Operation Silk Purse

This is a very battered model that was, rather randomly, kindly given to me in a launderette in Bounds Green circa 1984, by a chap who spotted me reading a wargames book. After 40 years, it's finally made it to the head of the painting queue! It's an OO/HO railway model that I've upscaled to 28mm, by making it slightly taller and crafting a 28mm door and step. It also needed a new steeple and quite a bit of filling. My plan is to tidy it up a bit but not change much of the original paintwork, which I have grown quite attached to; restoration rather than repainting.

Sorry for the recent lack of posts- I've been frantically posting out copies of the new FK&P Montrose scenario book. I'm down to my last 10 copies now, but have just ordered a second print run and should have more in a few days. I've also been very busy with basing for Salute- I'll take some pics next week!

Friday 26 January 2024

Montrose- To Win or Lose it All

Hi all, today I'm launching a new scenario book and also an accompanying "extra rules" book, for use with the TtS! For King and Parliament English Civil War rules. The 90-page Montrose- To Win or Lose it All scenario book contains nine free-standing scenarios covering the Marquis of Montrose's battles in Scotland in 1644-45. Eight are historical and one, a "what if". Each scenario contains a background briefing, separate briefings for each of the players, a deployment plan and an order of battle. The scenarios can be played individually or in sequence, as a campaign. The book also includes a background to the campaign and descriptions of the principle personalities involved, including Montrose, Alastair MacColla and Archibald Campbell. It could be adapted for use with other rule systems.

The 26-page Celtic Fringe Extra Rules book is intended for use alongside the TtS! For King and Parliament English Civil War rules and the Montrose "To Win or Lose it All" scenario book. By Celtic Fringe, we refer to the land and people west and north of the "Highland Line" in Scotland, and their Gaelic-speaking cousins across the Irish Sea. The book contains extra rules that build on the For King and Parliament mechanisms, modelling the traditional styles of fighting that still survived in these areas. As well as the Montrose scenario book, it will also support two planned future scenario books in the same series, concerned with the Insurgency and the Catholic Confederation in Ireland, and with Cromwell's campaigns in Ireland and Scotland.

These are available both as print books, in the usual-for-TtS! wire O bound format, and as digital downloads. If you live within the European Union, please purchase the digital downloads from here on Wargames Vault.

There is a modest discount if you buy both books together, and postage will also be somewhat  cheaper, especially if you are outside the UK. Enjopy!

Wednesday 17 January 2024

Mea Culpa

...it has been two months since my last post! A mix of real life stuff- and the BigRedBatShop has been insanely busy (thanks!). I've also been getting ready for publishing the ECW Montrose book towards the month end, and an updated Medieval Army List Book.

I've been trying to sort out some additional ECW cavalry for the big Salute game. So far, I have three squadrons of Dutch ready for flocking, two Swedish regiments half finished, a Dutch regiment needing snagging and basing. One more Swedish regiment is unseen, since it is still mustering. By Salute I hope to have 27 regiments of 18 men plus some separate squadrons.

In other news, I've just added some new bases in the BigRedBatShop- new command base sizes and a variant on the popular FK&P13b.