Friday, 12 July 2013

Fletcher Pratt on Grass - part 1

One of the games I ran at COW - together with John A and Martin R - was an outdoor Fletcher Pratt naval game.  I had been inspired to do this by Peter Douglas and chums but unlike him we sensibly waited for warm weather....
Once again ships from my extensive 1/1200 fleets were in action and I used a slightly modified of the Gibraltar Strait action as previously reported on here.  A surprisingly large number of players gathered, so I was able to appoint 4 as British and 5 as French.  As can be seen in the above photo, the ships were mounted on wooden bases for a number of reasons:
1. Visibility - without bases the modes would have been virtually invisible.
2. Appearance - the height of the base and 'pile' of the grass were similar.
3. Heft - I was worried about the models (especially the balsa ones) blowing away.
Our 100% accurate model of Gibraltar was crafted from a combination of Martin's hills and my Triang harbour bits.
At the other side of the Strait our representation of Africa was slightly less convincing...
The elite umpire team (Martin R and John A) on the left and the RN - Jim R, Russell K, Ian D and Phil S.
The French were led by John Curry - author of the Fletcher Pratt book.
French ships under way
The pride of the RN - Renown and a trio of destroyers - in port.
The 'H' class destroyers of 13th Destroyer Flotilla patrolling the strait.
Gunnery began at long range!  The firing arrows are plastic plant markers with the ranges written in non-permanent pen.
Vice Admiral Drury firing the coastal batteries
The destroyer patrol was soon in the thick of the action
The French gave every appearance of seasoned professionals in full control of the situation.  
At least that's what their admiral said...


Peter Douglas said...


Great looking game - glad to see that you got to play outdoors. Are you sure this took place in England - the sun was out?

Sylvain also mounted his ships on 2x4s and it helped a lot, especially with the visibility. What did you use for shell splashes and hits?

Tim Gow said...

Peter Douglas
We retained our hand carved shell splashes which look a lot like golf tees. They worked well. Not only was the sun shining but it was sufficiently hot that after 90 minutes or so it was a blessed relief to retire indoors!

Al said...

Cool looking game, big tables, big games

Tim Gow said...

Given the scenario we only used a tiny part of the lawn. But cruiser guns were still firing out to 20 feet!