OR A TRUE RELATION OF STRANGE PROCEEDINGS IN A SOMERSETSHIRE LOFT

Monday, 4 September 2017

MARCHING FOR PARLIAMENT AGAIN

I managed to get up to Malmesbury on Saturday where my old ECWS regiment Colonel Nicholas Devereux's was taking part in the town parade. This was the first time I had done Civil war drill for 20 odd years, but it's like riding a bike and all the postures came back as if I had learned them yesterday, so when the order came for "half file leaders double your front to the left" (after a momentary panic) I remembered what to do.


pic from the regiments facebook page

That's me, fifth from the right in the big brown hat! It was great to be marching behind the drums, fife and colours again, and I am really looking forward to going to a Sealed Knot event at the end of this month.

Traditionally, the ECWS always had the edge on authenticity with much better kit and drill, and the Sealed Knot on numbers, but with flaky kit and dire drill, but I think things have changed now. Sadly numbers in the ECWS seem to have dwindled, and it has to be said the average age has gone up considerably! Still it was good to be marching alongside such ECW luminaries as Alan Turton and Chris Scott. 

I'll post again as soon as I get my camera working.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

OLD PROJECTS RENEWED

In the middle of summer holidays at the moment so chaos reigns at Atticus Towers. Happily I  have plenty to look forward to. Having packed in working weekends after 20 years, I now have pretty much carte blanche for several weekends of the year, thanks to Mrs. Atticus being a fairly laid back sort of wife, bless her. So I've re-joined the Sealed Knot Society AND the English Civil War Society and hope to take up the cause if the common man fighting for Parliament against the tyrant Charles Stuart (just in case you were wondering which side I was on).

This is really exciting as 2017 is the 375th anniversary of start of the Civil Wars, so I hope to make the re-enactment of Edgehill my first event and make as many anniversary events as I can over the next few years. If that wasn't enough, the 400th anniversary of the start of the Thirty Years War approaches, so I hope to get involved in some of the events commemorating that (dreadful) conflict.

I found this on the web, and it's interesting to see a mix of muskets and calivers in the same unit, shot troops wearing helmets, and the range at which they are firing at each other. There are accounts of units touching barrels before giving fire and falling on. That takes some nerve. 

This will involve a certain amount of expenditure, but luckily I kept a lot of my equipment from last time I was in the Knot, about 20 years ago, at least the hardware. Swords, bandolier, musket, shoes....all the pricey things. An order has gone into The 1642 Tailor for doublet, hose and coat, so by the start of next year I should be clad as a volunteer for Parliament ready to take part in the campaigns of 1643.

All this is making me think about starting up my 1/72 TYW armies again, or increasing my 54mm ECW armies to fight Edgehill. Apart from my local battle Lansdown, Edgehill has always been my second favourite ECW battle to study, and I highly recommend this book if you are interested too


All 3 authors were in my ECWS regiment (one was a prospective father-in-law!) and their knowledge of the Civil War is unsurpassed. Happily they write unashamedly with a Parliamentarian bias, which is refreshing as virtually every other book on the Civil War is pro-Royalist.

Thursday, 8 June 2017

SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF ROBIN HOOD

I've been painting but not blogging, and am working on some Robin of Sherwood figures I hope to post soon. In the meantime here is a Robin Hood song which seems apposite today.



Hope to be back soon, but am working lengthy hours so I can contribute to my oldest son's underfunded school.... funny but I was under the impression I had already coughed up in my taxes.

Thursday, 2 March 2017

CAROLINGIANS FOR LION RAMPANT


It's been a bit quiet on this blog so I thought I would show these chaps I finished in January. Last year I actually managed to play a game of Lion Rampant with my chum Speckled Jim, and actually rather enjoyed it.....it being simple enough for even my shrivelled brain to comprehend (added to which I won). SJ announced he was starting to paint some Vikings up, so I thought an army heavy in cavalry might be able to run rings about him.

Over the last year or so I have been enjoying watching "Vikings" on Amazon Prime, the producers have made an effort to do some research, and although historically it's complete pants, if viewed as a semi mythical saga, it's actually rather good. However like most popular fiction set in the early medieval period, the Christians get a bum deal and are invariably portrayed as weak, incompetent, corrupt or debauched, or all these things together..... for goodness sake, if they were that spineless how is it they completely crushed almost all vestiges of Paganism in Europe, and we aren't all speaking Danish/Swedish . I blame Bernard Cornwell , a man with a big axe to grind.

Having gnashed my teeth at the blundering Saxon soldiers in "Vikings", the Franks were portrayed as equally timorous, until led by ex-Viking Rollo (my favourite character). The real Franks (and Saxons come to that) were of course just as ruthless and nasty as the Vikings, and Charlemagne did a splendid job of shortening several thousand Saxon prisoners one afternoon after they had upset him (he had them all beheaded).

Although my Frankish army is from the time of Charlemagne (747AD-814AD) rather than the Vikings, I copied the colour scheme from the TV series, with lots of turquoise and gold, and painted them up as semi-mythical, with the heavy cavalry in gilded armour and white cloaks as the Emperor's Paladins.
The army. 2 Foot serjeants, 2 knights and 1 Mounted Yeomen 

Most figures from Old Glory (one of my favourite manufacturers). The dracos are from Lancashire Games, as the OG ones were a bit weedy.



The yeomen were cobbled together from all sorts of odd figures. Some old Essex with head swaps, a pair of Garrison legs with an OG body...this was an army on a budget. The horses are a right medley as well.

The Paladins were almost all Old Glory, with the odd Artizan figure. The Franks were known for using flanged spears on horseback, so I had to add paper wings to these lances.

Here's the head Honcho. Roland is carrying the Oriflamme (I am surprised no one does a figure of Roland blowing his horn)



All in all a fun little army to paint. The good thing was there were no figures left over. I bought 1 bag of OG infantry, 1 of cavalry, and an Artizan command pack and scraped around for spare horses for the yeomen.

I was a little shocked I knew so little of Charlemagne, and more surprised by what a colossus he is in the rest of Europe, legends about him and his paladins stretching from Scandinavia to Italy and beyond. Of course, most European countries still treasure their legends and folklore, teaching them in nurseries and schools. I can't see that happening here.  Well worth looking into anyhow. Here's a stirring tune I found about Roland's last stand.


or if you want the heavy metal version 






Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Blogging problems

I haven't had a lot of time recently to do any blogging, but have just started again over on my fantasy Blog  . However blogger have been up to their tricks again, a deliberate conspiracy to drive me hopping mad.

Firstly  my dashboard changed from a handy one page with everything visible, to a veritable labyrinth. I have only just found how to access this blog again, the only one being visible was my fantasy blog.

Secondly, my avatar, the chap in the wig (Sanderson Miller the garden architect), has vanished off a number (but not all) of the blogs I follow. I am still officially following them, but the blog owner can't see that.

Thirdly, now when I try and follow (or re-follow) a blog, I have to use my real name rather than Springinsfeld (I would rather remain incognito on the net), and no avatar appears (unless I reload the image). There is no option given to follow privately.

What does it all mean, and why is it happening?