Rod’s Wargaming Website

Having been wargaming for over 60 years, I thought I would set this website up as a record of my activities.

The “About” page contains a history of my wargaming over the years, and since I grew up in Southampton, which many might regard as the spiritual home of wargaming in UK, you will notice some well known pioneers of the hobby mentioned there.

The other Top Menu pages are devoted to the different historical periods of my wargaming, in the main sections of Ancients and Horse & Musket.  The Ancient section has drop down sub-menus of Roman Era and Medieval.  The Horse & Musket section has drop down sub-menus of 18th Century, Napoleonic and Zulu War.  There is also a section on General matters, which includes sub-pages on Terrain, PlanningModelling Tips and Wargame Accessories.

There is also a section on Military Historical Research, containing a number of items of straight (ie not wargaming) matters which I have researched over the years.  This section comprises two drop down sub-sections, one on Organisation and one on Tactics.  The former includes a paper on the Authorised Establishments of the British Army (1802-1815), which has details of the organisational structure of infantry, cavalry, artillery, engineers and supporting units.  It also includes a paper on British Converged Light Battalions, the latter formed by converging all of the light infantry and rifle companies in each brigade, plus several further papers.

The right end of the Top Menu has a Contact page and a Search button.

The postings on the Blog record my current model soldier production or wargaming activities.  I also use this to announce any new pages published on the website.  The blog postings below are in reverse chronological order, but can also be accessed by subject through the side menu.

Finally, I have recently set up a new website to give details of my portfolio of Military History Talks (currently 19).  This can be viewed here.

A Tribute to HM The Queen

Seeing all of the news items showing St Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh, where the Queen’s coffin is resting as I write, reminds me that I made a model of that Cathedral. The real cathedral is below:

My slightly simplified model is here:

I had the privilege to meet the Queen in 1976 when I was commanding a Royal Engineer Bomb Disposal Squadron. Here is a photo of that occasion with her watching my Sergeant Major demonstrating a remote controlled “wheelbarrow” robot. The Queen is looking slightly severe with her arms folded as I had just warned her that there was about to be a small bang.

A year later, I and my wife had a holiday in Kenya, including staying at the Treetops Hotel where the then Princess Elizabeth was staying when she learned of her father’s death and thus became Queen. We were fortunate to be allocated the Queen Elizabeth Suite as our room, although the hotel had been rebuilt by the time we stayed there.

More Paper Soldiers

I have been a bit busy on other things recently, but for the last few weeks I have been in Spain so have returned to expanding my Paperboys Jacobite ’45 set up.

I had previously made all of the British Infantry for Prestonpans, as shown here, here and here. The original Paperboys figures are 28mm high and a stand of 4 infantry is 40mm wide. I wanted my stands to be the same width as my plastic 1:72 figures (23mm high) which have a frontage of 15mm per figure. I therefore reduced the Paperboys scale to 70% which gave 4 figures (20mm high) on a 30mm wide base. My plastic figures are on a 1:30 ratio but by modelling the Paperboys on a 1:15 ratio they cover exactly the same frontage as my plastic units.

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28mm Napoleonic 1st Foot Guards Ensign

As those following my posts will know, my wargame figures, in all eras, are 1:72 plastic (apart from nearly three hundred home cast 1:72 metal Zulus). However, I did have six 28mm metal figures which came as “freebies” with various Warlord Games Black Powder supplements. A few years ago I painted up one such figure, a 1745 Black Watch highlander, as a present for my grandson and that can be seen here.

I asked my daughter what my 13 Year old grandson would like for Christmas this year and was told “Amazon Vouchers”. That did not sound very exciting but we bought him those. I decided to give him something extra which he was not expecting, another 28mm figure.

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Edinburgh Castle

This is the final part of my modelling Edinburgh as it was in 1745. My previous recent posts described modelling the town. This covers modelling the castle itself.

Edinburgh Castle in the mid-18th Century looked like this.

The ground around the castle was more open than it is now and the old city walls came right up to the castle. Many of the buildings on the southern and western sides of the castle had not yet been constructed.

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Edinburgh Town – Part 2

In my previous post, Edinburgh Town Part – 1, I described how I used my existing Medieval wall system (plus a few new elements) and PaperTerrain houses from their Village and Town packs to create a model of Edinburgh as it was in 1745.

In this post I am going describe a number of additional model buildings which I have made to represent historical Edinburgh buildings.

The first of these is a simple conversion of a PaperTerrain village house into the famous “World’s End” pub, which was the last building before the Netherbow Port, hence its name which implies that there was nothing worth visiting outside Edinburgh old town. The pub is still there but the Netherbow Port gate was demolished in 1764. I think this “street view” is quite effective.

My model doesn’t look a lot like the pub, I just printed out the modern pub signs and added them to the building.

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Edinburgh Town – Part 1

Following on from my last post on additional troops (Regular, Militia and Volunteer) to defend Edinburgh, my current project is making a model of the City and castle, starting with the City. In 1745 it looked like this:

The castle is on the left (west) with the old town running down the ridge (now the Royal Mile) to Holyrood Palace on the right. There were almost no buildings of note north of the city until you reach the Forth.

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Defence of Edinburgh

I have recently received a copy of Jonathan Oates’ excellent book “The Sieges of the ’45”, published by Helion as part of their “Reason to Revolution” series. I actually ordered it several months ago, but it has only just been printed. I have probably now read it at least five times.

It has much more detail on the various sieges than more general histories of the ’45 and has inspired me to revisit my wargame troops involved in those sieges. The picture on the front cover is Carlisle, but I thought I would start with Edinburgh.

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HMS Sheerness – Part 1

I have previously made a couple of Naval vessels to represent those which took part in coastal or river operations during the Jacobite Rebellion. These were a 12 gun Royal Navy brig (two masted ship) and a merchant brig. These could represent HMS Hazard, captured by the Jacobites in Montrose Harbour in November 1745, and the French Armed Transport La Renommée which assisted in this. They could also represent HMS Vulture which unsuccessfully attempted to prevent a Jacobite merchant brig transporting French supplied siege artillery across the River Forth at Alloa in January 1746. Finally, the Royal Navy brig could represent the French ship “le Prince Charles” (the captured HMS Hazard) which was carrying £13,000 in gold for the Jacobites (worth £25 million today) but which was forced ashore in March 1746 in the Kyle of Tongue, by the 24 gun Frigate, HMS Sheerness.

I needed a model for HMS Sheerness, a larger three masted frigate than the other two, and which looked like this.

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