Monday, 24 June 2013

BUF Mortar Team

Firstly, apologies for the quality of the photos in this entry – I’ve just returned from a rather spiffing weeks holiday in Cornwall, marred only by the fateful introduction of my camera to a grain of sand, which has played merry hell with the shutter and focus mechanism. Consequently I am relying on the camera on my iPad – a beast which I have yet to fully get to grips with.

Anyway, back to the eye candy. This is a Great War Miniatures late war British mortar team that I bought second-hand from the Lead Adventure Forum.

I’ve painted the crew in BUF colours (an example, possibly, of BUF members in campaign fatigues?) in order to give my Three Counties Legion some extra oomph…

Monday, 10 June 2013

Fences Finished

Not a very interesting post, but I’ve finished scratchbuilding the fences. Note the rather wonky gate!

Herefordshire Parish Map

This is a parish map of Herefordshire, showing the dominant military force in each area.  One of the chaps in the Very British Civil Forum has done something similar with Bedfordshire, and I thought it was a great idea!

Most of the county is not dominated by any single military presence, with the inhabitants looking to their own defence, heedless of the bigger political picture.

On the Royalist side, the City of Hereford and environs are largely protected by the Hereford Municipal LDV, while the Herefordshire Regiment T.A. and other royalist militias are strung out along the main road and rail routes to Shropshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire (with an outpost at Pontrilas on the Hereford – Abergavenny line).

The Fascist B.U.F. and Blackshorts are concentrated around their barracks at Bromyard and Leominster respectively, but have also been given the job of guarding sensitive spots such as Shobdon and Rotherwas. They also have a dominant presence in the newly ‘liberated’ parishes between Colwall, Ledbury and Much Marcle and also near the strategic rail junction by Little Hereford in the north, guarding against the Worcester Loyalists in Tenbury Wells and sundry roaming bands of socialists from the Midlands (who have established themselves in the north-east of the county).

Dotted around the countryside are parishes under the control of the ostensibly royalist Landowners’ Protection Association. The bulk of these are along the vulnerable Welsh border, where the farmers and landowners have banded together to guard against Welsh raiders. Others straddle important road and rail routes, access to which is jealously guarded by the local gentry. Another band of L.P.A. territory acts as a buffer zone between royalist and Anglican Herefordshire.

After initially controlling most of Herefordshire, Anglican League territory has been largely reduced to the ‘Diocese of Archenfield’, a chunk of territory stretching from Ross-on-Wye and environs to the sympathetic communities in the Forest of Dean and the Welsh Nationalists in Monmouthshire. Pockets of Anglican resistance can also be found in and around the Malvern Hills, occasionally acting in concert with the Malvern Hills Conservators.

The Welsh Nationalists have snatched a piece of the county by occupying Kington and its hinterland, although a growing royalist movement in the area is threatening this toehold.

I'll try to keep this map updated as things progress...

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Pimp my Forward Observation Vehicle

A while back my attempts to scratchbuild some kind of armoured vehicle resulted in a rather shoddy looking forward observation vehicle – a skewed and somewhat clumsy affair which I’ve never been happy with.

I’ve been harbouring vague plans to improve (i.e. disguise the deficiencies of) the vehicle with some sort of camouflage netting, and as luck would have it I chanced across something that would do the job whilst walking my parents’ dog in their field recently – a piece of green plastic netting, not unlike the stuff that supermarket oranges come in.

Some glue and a liberal sprinkling of flock mixture later, and my forward observation vehicle is now looking a little less crappy (although in retrospect I wish I’d left a few holes in the netting to show the camo paint scheme underneath a bit more).

The vehicle’s main armament is a powerful telescope, but who is responsible for creating such a precision instrument? Maybe it was someone like Mr. C H Leake, a Herefordshire farmer who in 1935 appeared in the Pathe News bulletin “Peeps Through the Window of the World” with his home-made astronomical telescope.

Mr. Leake not only ground and silvered the reflector himself, but also invented a water clock mechanism to follow the path of stars across the sky!

Now there was a Leake family farming not far from where I grew up… Hmm… I wonder…

Monday, 3 June 2013

WWII Weekend at Berrington Hall

Following last year’s whistle stop visit, I was determined to spend more time at last weekend’s WWII event at Berrington Hall, and so the JP clan packed a picnic and headed out for the day.

Some glorious weather, a history trail for the girls and plenty of time to mooch around made for a cracking day.

I was somewhat remiss in taking photos, but the few I did take I will now share with you, dear reader…