Friday 28 August 2009

Lord Fitzwarin's contingent completed

I have just completed and varnished my second contingent for Edward IV's command at Towton. This consisted of retinues from Lord Hastings and Lord Fitzwarin. I have also made flags for all of my stands to date. These should suffice until we get the official ones through. Personally, I think that they do not look bad at all and I would like to thank David Rayner for providing me with the heraldic banners, which I have rescaled to suit my figures.

This means I have now painted 522 figures out of a planned personal total of 8334 figures (i.e. one full set of the order of battle) or 18 stands out of a total of 288. That means I only have 270 stands / 7812 figures left to paint and base. It'll be a breeze!

Lord Fitzwarin's retinue (click the photos for larger versions)

Lord Hastings' Retinue

Fitzwarin's Contingent

Progress So Far

Next up will be Lord Grey of Ruthin's levies; 4 stands each of levy archers and levy billmen. In a bid to maintain my own interest in the project and to use the figures as early on as possible, I am also putting together the additional elements I need to field a couple of Basic Impetus armies. I have completed a couple of stands of mounted knights, two stands of artillery and one of handgunners so far. Currently on the painting table are two stands of spearmen (also part of Northumberland's command in the Towton game), a stand of crossbowmen and a stand of pikemen. That should help keep things fresh.

On a side note, I realised that if I paint everything I need for my personal target then I shall be the proud owner of four 800 point Field of Glory armies too. I reckon that means that sometime around summer next year I shall be able to try FoG too, assuming I can ever manage to read the rules. Ah well, variety will help keep me moving on this project.

Monday 24 August 2009

Better Pics.

Didn't realise the pics looked so bad, so whilst my gorgeous lady is getting ready to go out snook some more which are better.

First Contingent

With just 14 hours to go before I wizz off to France for a bit of 'bunker busting' with some colleagues I managed to get the first contingent finished. Sorry for the oicture quality but I guess I've rushed as my good lady would like me to take her out for tea before I disappear and can't understand the urgency to post!

Even though the pics aren't the best it gives a good impression of what everything will look like. I've put banners and standards on to try and start and get an idea of what looks right on the figures. I quite like the Neville set up compared to Scrope, i.e. the small swallow tail with the archers, the badge banner with the bills and the large standard with the men at arms?

They will easily be replaced when the time comes but for now at least it gives an idea what it will look like. Any way first contingent done, 6 days in France and then start on the second with a fury!!.

Wednesday 12 August 2009

First bases

Well my first three bases are complete, 1 man at arms and two long bow the billmen will be finished tonight and that will give me half of the first contingent. I have had a go at making my own banners/standards for now and will replace with appropriate freezywater flags when they arrive, however they do not do badge banners and do not do all the livery banners hence my own attempt at Scropes.

I don't think they've come out so bad and I would hope to give all the archer bases the small badge standard and all men at arms/billmen (retinue) the livery banner. Not certain yet about Levy troops. Will be another week or so till I catchup with Ruarigh and have the first contingent complete. But we're off. In terms of the painting whilst I don't normaly use the army painter I have in this case. The figures have been brushed over with army painter and then sprayed with anti shine. I think it will strengthen them and creates a not bad effect. As usual figures are by Baccus and bases by ERM

Monday 10 August 2009

My First Contingent

I completed my first contingent over the weekend. Only four more to go and I shall have completed my first command. This contingent comprises ten stands, which means that I only have 278 stands to go to complete my personal target for the project. So, enough rambling, here are some pictures of the contingent, which consists of Edward IV's retinue and Sir Henry Bouchier's retinue. This contingent contains 294 figures and would probably be represented by a mere 40 figures in 15mm or larger scales.

The figures are all Baccus 6mm, based on mdf bases from East Riding Miniatures using the Baccus Basing System. We are awaiting the arrival of flags, so they have no banners or standards yet, but I look forward to remedying that when Freezywater/The Lance and Longbow Society send them through (it's a bit of a job sorting out all the flags we need for our refight).
Looking again at these pictures, I realise that I should have straightened a few of the bills. That is one problem with 6mm figures; pole weapons bend easily. Still, I reckon that even with these few figures, the sense of mass ought to come through.

The whole contingent arrayed for battle with the archers in the front:

The archers:

Dismounted knights:

The billmen:

Wednesday 5 August 2009

They're here!

Good kind posty delivered two boxes of goodies. The first phase is here and thanks go to Pete and Igor for pulling the stops out and turning the order round so quick. Lots and lots and lots of figures.
No pics but I'm off now to stick the first contingent on the painting sticks and then into the garage for an undercoat.
Tomorrow the start !!!!!

Monday 3 August 2009

Patiently Waiting

Without wishing this to sound like 'Wargamers Annonymous' - I'm Graham and I collect toy soldiers, I live in Redcar on the North East coast and am 52 years of age. I have more than enough figures to paint to see me through the next twenty years!!! So why get involved in this?
Together with other colleagues I've put on demonstration games at shows since the early 80's, always using 28mm and I still mainly game in that scale.

However last year after a visit to the Baccus open day I found myself collecting 6mm Franco-Prussians and starting to look at disposing my large lead mountain and replacing it with a smaller one! But I found the figures are great, paint well and en masse look damn impressive.

The WOTR is one of my favourite periods and I had disposed of my 28mm collection some years ago, however as we gamers do I was contemplating a return but undecided where to start, then came this years Baccus open day, a bit of pixie dust, some talk in the pub and Ruarigh's damn invititation to participate in the biggest battle on English soil. Too much!!! I succumbed so easily, the imagination of those 25,000 or is it 33,000 now little warrriors on good looking terrain just proved too much, so I signed up.

The first figures have been sold on ebay to fund this, the order has been placed and I wait patiently for the Post Man to arrive with my new army. Hopefully by Wednesday they will be here, by Thursday undercoated and by the weekend who knows.

Wargaming is wonderful hobby!!!!

Watch this space.

About Me

Hi, I'm Keith. I currently live in Nottingham where I am studying for a BA in archaeology. History and archaeology are my life, and I have had a long interest in the Wars of the Roses, so much so that five years ago I started write a book on the battles of Tewkesbury and Barnet which has seen me travelling all over the country collecting every scrap of information. Little did I know what I was getting myself into!

My passion for all things history has resulted in me working for a short time with the National Trust and now in the armoury at the Wallace Collection in London where I assist in the conservation of arms and armour and undertake my own research for yet another book!

As soon as I read about the Towton project I knew I had to get involved, so here I am. My interest in Towton was first sparked when the mass grave was discovered back in 1996, and since then the battle and the period have become a real passion. I couldn't begin to count the number of books, papers and other bits and pieces I have amassed relating to the Wars of the Roses, but all I do know is that I'm in danger of being buried alive.

Further interest developed when I found out I was a descendant of a number of individuals who fought in the wars, not least the Bourchiers who fought at Towton.

Anyway, enough for now. I will add more posts as I begin work on the figures. So off to do some research......

Saturday 1 August 2009

More About My Elephant's Ear

As promised, here are some pictures with a little explanatory text and rather too many statistics. First, my elephant's ear, Edward IV's command as it arrived yesterday from Baccus(Click pics for larger versions):

Everything was very well packed and all the figures were in bags marked with what they contained. Peter had acceded to my demands for a non-standard mix of ordinary troops and command strips (the minis come on strips of four figures) and had marked on the bags how many of each was in each bag.

With the shiny new figures in my grubby mitts, I set to and sorted out what I needed for Edward IV's command. There are a few figures left over because the commands do not conform exactly to the packs of 24 strips (96 figures each). These will be put towards the next command I produce.

As mentioned before, I also received a large bag full of pre-cut 60x30mm mdf bases from East Riding Miniatures. I immediately sorted out what I needed for Edward's command and laid them out on the table. You can see the pile of additional stands in the corner. I have enough for about 2/3 of the Yorkist army. This picture shows Edward's command as it would be deployed, but sans figures. How depressing to see so many empty stands! The 30x40mm stand in front of the battle will be Edward's command stand. I plan to make it a little diorama but am unsure just what to put on it yet.

Our basic core army will consist of six commands like this one and once painted will contain 8514 figures. This command alone will contain 1212 figures. However, me being me, I had to lay out our ultimate goal too. This picture shows Edward's battle at triple size (The rule in the front of the picture is 1' or 30cm long).

If we succeed in fielding the armies at triple size, as we hope to, then we shall field 25470 figures in the whole army and Edward's command will contain 7242 figures. After laying out the triple size army, I suddenly thought about expanding the game further. What if we could do the game at quadruple size? I did not have enough stands to lay out Edward's whole command at quadruple size, so I have done a rather simplistic and not very competent photoshop job on what I did have to give an idea of how it might look.

Each of the contingents in this command has a frontage of 24cm or 9.5". The whole command would have a frontage on the table of 1.2m or 4'. Now that's more like it! The whole army in this case would consist of 33948 figures, with Edward's battle containing 9654 figures. Oh yes, now that's what I call a game!

Right, enough blogging, I have figures to prepare and undercoat, while I also need to clear my painting table so that I can crack on with the Towton project. Wish me luck, I am going in!