What Ho dear readers! My Very British Civil War project is in danger of reaching fruition as the heady combination of great miniatures, cracking vehicles, and scenics all approach the state of being finished with the alluring promise of much gaming ahead. Above is the Margate Section (St. Johns) of the Anglican League. I do seem to be in an unhealthy minority when it comes to VBCW, primarily it seems to be mainly my Northern and Scots cousins playing this game, secondarily very few seem to have embraced the Anglican League – either preferring the satorial elegance of the BUF, the self-righteous joy of all things socialist, or the simple nimby stance of militias. I’m left consoling myself with the truism of how God does indeed move in mysterious ways, and rather handily he’s let these photos be some of the best of models I’ve ever taken. Above is a BEF Miniatures Char FCM 2C, named “Charlie”, two Bolt Action TKS light tanks with 20mm guns, named “The Twins”, plus a converted diecast which is nameless because it’s effectively a staff car and staff are well known for having no imagination at all.
It’s a pleasant but simple conversion, plate armour added to protect the radiator and engine, another piece to protect both driver and passenger, with a handy slit with a hinged cover for the driver, various goodies dotted around and the small detail of a machine gun to clear minor traffic obstructions, tastefully finished in a dark Anglican blue.
Here’s the BUF’s vehicles, a much flashier collection as the Devil does seem to own all the best cars. There’s a BEF Miniatures Vickers Light Tank, a Sloppy Jalopy Austin Type 3 armoured car, an Airfix Gloster Gladiator in 1/72 scale, the home-brewed Pig based on a converted diecast, a converted diecast Mercedes and a converted diecast Bentley. One thing I’ve noticed in my recent foray into 28mm is how a lot of folk struggle to find suitable aircraft in the near matching 1/48th scale, but how easily the eye accepts 1/72nd models as fitting which I believe the Gladdy does quite agreeable and for a better price.
The Bentley is a conversion by the boy Slug, and rather well done I think. The driver was originally the same figure as that in the Anglican League staff car but it’s had a head swop to keep him in line with our decision to have the majority of BUF figures wearing caps just like their uniformed ranks did, bar the ladies. It has a nifty flag on the rear, an HMG for the passenger and a fascist black finish.
The Regulars of the British forces have a very humble collection which reflects the interwar budget, based on the simplistic premise of “If there’s not going to be another war then we don’t need an army”. The plane I can’t place, but there’s another another BEF Miniatures Vickers Light Tank, a simple conversion of a diecast van, plus a plain diecast “Travelling Library”.
Of those it’s the Travelling Library which is the real joy, I’ve done nothing to it, but it’s got my county on the side of it – all my VBCW games will (in the manner of the idea) be played in Kent which makes it close to the divine. It’s a humble model, but could hold any number of secrets or not.
Time for the weapons of mass transportation, namely my first VBCW conversion the armoured tram, two buses in East Kent Road Car Company colours (including decals!), and a delightful French Renault bus by Solido. The latter is also superb for WW2 games of course.
Finally private and commercial vehicles, two different steam driven lorries, Jones the Butchers van, a petrolium tanker (essential if you’re running a tank), an Austin taxi, a Bentley (same model as used by Slug for the BUF conversion), an Evening News van and a Riley sports car. All in all it’s taken me just shy of a year to collect this lot together and aside from feeling very lucky to afford such a complete collection I think I’ve managed to reflect the type of vehicles you might get around the late 30’s even though I’m still totally lacking in horse-powered transport. The majority have been either off that Ebay or from boot fairs or market stalls at very good prices, which has left me a decent budget for the more militaristic gaming pieces. It’s been great fun getting these together, but I’d still like to thank both The Gentleman’s Wargame Parlour and the Lead Adventures Forum for their inspiration, advice and general chuminess throughout this project. Rah! Rah! Them!