Part of the loot from the Paris toy soldier show, these Quiralu aluminium castings were in desperate need of a repaint. As luck would have it, desperate paintwork is the only kind I can manage, so here they are after some rapid brushwork.
Wednesday, 27 April 2022
Monday, 11 April 2022
COW 2022 will not be held at Knuston Hall, which is closed until the autumn (details below).
The COW organisers are committed to holding a WD event this summer - either a VCOW over the weekend 8th - 10th July or a face to face COW at an alternative venue and possibly over a different weekend.
We hope to make an announcement at the end of this month.
The details from the Knuston Hall website and Facebook page are as follows:
"Knuston Hall is currently closed and courses are cancelled until Autumn 2022.
The Council is reviewing operations, including looking at improvements to the facilities and safety upgrades.
We understand this will be disappointing for our customers and hope to conclude the review as quickly as possible.
In the meantime we are not taking any bookings for future courses and any monies paid for courses in the cancellation period will be refunded. We will not be transferring money to future courses.
We will be working through cancellations in date order and will be in touch with you regarding your booking.
Please accept our sincere apologies for any inconvenience and disappointment this has caused."
Sunday, 10 April 2022
Monday, 4 April 2022
Organising team stalwart Brian Carrick tells me that all but one of the traders who’d booked for 2020 have confirmed - the missing one due to a diary clash.
I will be there with a table groaning under the weight of high quality items - do come and spend, or just say hello.
My report on the last (2019) show is here: link.
Saturday, 26 March 2022
I mentioned earlier that there had been some retail incidents last weekend - here are some of the highlights.
Thursday, 24 March 2022
Following a torrent* of requests for more information on the toys used in the Petrograd Nights game, here it is.
* at least two
Tuesday, 22 March 2022
I’m just back from a brief trip abroad - which should have taken place two years ago! Not to be confused with this series.
Sunday, 6 March 2022
|Bolsheviks and Kronstadt sailors come to blows while Conservatives and Socialist Revolutionaries look on.|
|The high quality replica of the square.|
This was the first full playtest of Russell’s new game. Taking as it’s subject the various Russian revolutions of 1905 and 1917, the game starts with a session of the National Executive Committee.
Surely this will pass off peacefully with everyone in agreement. Well no, because some silly sod always calls a strike. This soon descends into a vulgar street brawl and so resolved using 54mm toy soldiers to represent the various factions.
I had ‘volunteered’ to run the fighting in the square and wrote what might easily be mistaken for rules for such. I assembled various factions of toy soldiers – including two brigades of sailors from Kronstadt – and deployed them on my museum-quality replica of Palace Square.
In our game there was a strike almost immediately but that was followed by two. NEC sessions in which a number of progressive and enlightened measures were…….rejected.
|Fighting in the square|
|The factions gathering|
Russell had thankfully resisted the temptation of cheap typecasting and so the factions were:
Bolsheviks - Martin Rapier
Socialist Revolutionaries - Russell
Liberals - John Armatys
Conservatives - Your humble correspondent
Tsarists - John Bassett
The NEC was soon dominated by the Tsarists and Conservatives and we resisted a number of seditious proposals which if passed would clearly have undermined the stability of Mother Russia. This nonsense included the exile of the Tsar, collectivisation of agriculture and ending illiteracy among the peasants. It was widely agreed that all of these went against the laws of God. The one motion we passed was to make peace with Germany, which we all felt was quite a good idea. A government was eventually formed of Conservatives and Tsarists.
|The very busy hospital!|
While the Liberals initially supported us, they soon decided to take to the streets! In a close fight in the square, the forces of law and order prevailed over the anarchist street thugs (as we called anyone with even mildly progressive views) and stable government resumed under the slogan ‘Forward to 1850!’
|Both regiments of sailors joined the final fight in the square|
A most entertaining game which might well have spin-offs for other situations. Russell has run it again today for a larger group,of players - it went very well.
Look out for it at COW 2022
And if you’d like more information about any of the toy soldiers please let me know in the comments.