Sunday, 23 March 2014

Gilder and Waterloo 150

1965 was a big year for Napoleonic enthusiasts, none more so than a young Peter Gilder who proved to be a pivotal figure in two of our hobby's major commemorative events - the British Model Soldier Society Waterloo Convention, and Wargamers Newsletter's Military Festival.

First up two reports, from the BMSS periodical 'THE BULLETIN' (No 6 December 1965), on the Waterloo Convention (staged at the Rembrandt Hotel, London on 18th June), where PG  starred in the final of the BMSS national Napoleonic wargame competition:

Next, also from THE BULLETIN (this time No 3 June 1965), Donald Featherstone's report on his Military Festival (staged on the 20th March at Chelsea Barracks), where PG contributed to a demonstration wargame of Waterloo itself:

It strikes me how quickly (within a couple of years of discovering the hobby) Gilder had become a major figure in British wargaming. Of course the hobby was much smaller then, but it is testament to his great enthusiasm and talent nevertheless (and getting on with Don Featherstone would have helped too!).

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Battleground in the TV Times

An article from the TV Times previewing Battleground. Thanks to Roy Lowson for sending it in.

Monday, 14 October 2013

My Hero 2

The future MP for Liverpool by Doug Mason.

Every chap of good taste wants his own miniature Banastre Tarleton, and i am no exception. Luckily  the legend of paint brush and soldering iron that is Doug Mason kindly agreed to create one for me. The basic figure is the Suren British Legion officer (armed with trademark pin sabre) mounted on a Hinchliffe horse (my favourite of the 'dramatic' Gilder horses) that he controls via wire reins (another Mason trademark).

Every sensible scouser turns up to a fight mob-handed, and our future MP for Liverpool is no exception - the British Legion cavalry are hot on his heels. These, and other DM creations, will feature as soon as i've based them up.

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

'A Military Gentleman' now on general sale

John Ray's masterpiece is now available to anyone who missed the pre-launch offer. In short: if you can afford it then buy it, you will not be disappointed.

The hobby has not seen the like of this book before, and won't again (unless perhaps John does another). John and his team have taken the journal of an officer who served in Europe and America, dramatised his story, and illustrated it with literally hundreds of plates, sketches and photographs of John's vast collection of 30mm bespoke figures, buildings, ships and terrain. You get land and naval battles, sieges, vignettes and civilian scenes. Every element of this work is superb, no corners have been cut. It's even physically impressive: a solid 'Troiani sized' (approx 12" by 9") hardback of over 300 pages.

The nearest comparison that comes to mind is Curt Johnson's 'Battles of the American Revolution' but it's a poor comparison - 'A Military Gentleman' blows Johnson out of the water and into the outer atmosphere.

So, if you are an 18th century wargamer, appreciate state of the art sculpting, modelling and painting, or just enjoy a beautifully produced book, then go on, spoil yourself......

Friday, 20 September 2013

The Birth of Hinchliffe Models

From THE BULLETIN (the journal of the British Model Soldier Society) October 1967 edition:

Friday, 16 August 2013

Eligible bachelor seeks cavalry brigade

Casimir Pulaski in search of a command. 

My miniature version of one of the more tragic figures of the AWI* is a Hinchliffe Prussian Hussar (OPC50) with a Suren head (appropriately enough from George Washington, with added tache). The figure is based on the Batowski painting (which is unlikely to be particularly accurate, but it's one of the iconic images of Pulaski, so what the hell....).

My rebel cavalry force is in urgent need of reinforcement, the reasons for which will become evident shortly.

*Forced to flee his homeland, shunned by many rebel officers, and mortally wounded during a futile charge - this man clearly broke a few mirrors in his time.

Saturday, 27 July 2013


 Right lads, they want a kitchen extension, conservatory, and oak floors throughout....

In more ways than one - the Black Company of Pioneers was one of the first all black units of ex-slaves raised during the AWI. Most loyalist units were mixed, and these chaps too were eventually integrated into the Guides and Pioneers.

Thirsty work.

These loyal servants of the King are conversions of Connoisseur Egyptian artillerymen, tools by Minden.