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Tuesday 31 March 2020

Garrison Persian Infantry Restoration

These figures, again from Garrison Miniatures, are listed as PE 12, Phrygian armoured infantry, with creast. Sounds more like a Star Trek race of aliens; however, I looked up Phrygia, which was an area in the centre of modern Turkey and these chaps seemingly were seconded into the Persian army once the area had been conquered.

They are lovely figures, with crisp detail and were a delight to restore:

Monday 30 March 2020

Minifigs French Dragoons

Another project completed.  This is the last of my outstanding projects that have been lying dormant in my painting queue.

These figures are 25mm Miniature Figurines French Line Dragoons:

Friday 27 March 2020

More Greeks

Over the last few days I have been refurbishing several batches of Greeks and Persians. These are 25mm figures by Garrison:

Sunday 22 March 2020

More French Gunners

The second set of gunners that have been sitting patiently for around ten years to be finished is this group of Minifigs Guard Horse Artillery. At long last they are completed and ready to take to the field:

Saturday 21 March 2020

Minifigs 25mm French Napoleonic Line Artillery

I actually started painting these figures in 2011 and almost completed them, but for some reason they were set aside, along with some guard horse artillery. I have dug them out many times over the years intent on completing them, added a bit of detail, but they were always set aside for more important projects. Well, last night I finally finished them and they are ready to join the the rest of their colleagues:

Friday 20 March 2020

Airfix WW1 French Infantry

Having enjoyed a couple of WW1 games set in the early war years, I thought it might be interesting to have some actions involving French troops. Unfortunately the Airfix WW1 French, unlike the British and German offerings, are dressed in the later uniform wearing a helmet.  I clearly needed some in the older red breeches and kepi style.

I could have opted for figures from Hat or Caesar, who both do early French, but I was keen to use Airfix if possible.  So, I set about lopping off heads and attaching new ones sourced from ACW figures.

Here are the results:

I quite like the results and I reckon they will look OK on the table

I have ordered a few pieces from Irregular Miniatures and some Hat artillery figures.

Thursday 12 March 2020

Battle Report - Retreat from Mons August 1914

Brigadier AEW Count Gleichen, Commander 15th Infantry Brigade, 5th Division B.E.F. gives orders to the COs of his three remaining infantry battalions; 1 Norfolk, 1 Bedfords and 1Dorsets, along with OC 119 Field Battery and OC of two Sqns of 9th Lancers:

'15 Bde is to delay the advancing enemy, in order that 5 Div may break clean and rejoin 2 Corps BEF. The Brigade will form a blocking position short of the village of Ouevy Le Petit, holding the low ridge'.

' Phase1: The Norfolks will deploy forward and cover the bridge over the small, shallow, fordable river to disrupt the enemy advance and cause delay. 

The Dorsets will hold the left ridge, with the Bedfords on the right'.

'Phase 2: Once the Norfolks have delayed the enemy advance they are to withdraw back into the village and become the brigade reserve:
'119 Bty is to attach a troop of guns to each battalion and 9 Lancers are to remain in reserve near the village. Brigade HQ will deploy forward with 1 Norfolk during Phase1; thereafter will be in the vicinity of the village church'

The Action at Ouevy Le Petit

Around midday  the first German troops are spotted advancing along the road towards 1 Norfolk, they are the 1st Battalion 36th Fusiliers (1/36):
Commander 15 Brigade, standing near to CO 1 Norfolks gives the order to open fire:
The advancing 1/36th comes under artillery and machine gun fire from the vickers on the bridge:
More German troops are spotted moving up behind 1/36, consisting of 2/36 and some artillery:

The German guns unlimber and begin firing on the bridge:

At the same time, German 1/36 rushes forward in an attempt to storm the bridge. They are met with a hail of machine gun and rifle fire and are decimated, losing two companies:
1/36, breaks and retreats back beyond the small wood.
1/36's machine gun is engaged by British artillery and destroyed:
There is a slight lull as more German artillery arrives and troops from 3/36th pour onto the field:
 More intense artillery fire rains down upon the Norfolks position, destroying the Vickers on the bridge and causing other casualties:
At the same time the leading elements of the German 93rd Chasseurs (1/93) can be seen moving up against the Norfolk's right flank, with more batttalions behind them:

Having given 1/36 a bloody nose, and in danger of being outflanked 15 Brigade commander orders CO 1 Norfolks to pull back to the village and for the Brigade to commence Phase 2:
With 2 and 3/36th still some way off the Norfolks successfully break away and rapidly move up the road passing the Dorsets and Bedfords and take up position in the village:
The Germans are now aware that their front is strongly defended and move forwards more cautiously as 2/36th and 3/36th wade through the shallow river towards the cornfields beyond:
However, 2/36th with artillery support soon runs into the Dorsets defending the wooded ridge to their front and come under intense fire, taking heavy casualties:
Even though they have the combined weight of artillery and rifle fire, which cause some casualties amongst the Dorsets, 2/36th's attack is blunted and they are forced to withdraw.

However; 3/36th's approach offers more cover and they are able to close on the Bedfords and bring down heavy fire. Also, 1/93rd, forces a crossing of the river whilst under fire and threatens the Bedfords further:
A major fire fight around 1 Bedfords position begins. Soon B Coy is decimated and the Bedford's position becomes untenable:
CO 1 Bedford orders his remaining troops to pull back off the ridge and they take up positions behind a fence line under intense fire:
With 1 Bedford pulling back this leaves the Dorsets right flank exposed, so they begin to withdraw back into the village alongside the Norfolks:
Despite heavy casualties the Bedfords manage to hold off the German assault:
A pause in activity then occurred, The Germans had exhausted three battalions, and despite causing heavy casualties 15 Brigade was still holding the ground, albeit having pulled back to the village.

While the british consolidated their defence of the village, the Germans brought up fresh troops and commenced an artillery bombardment. 15 Brigade now had all three battalions in and around the village, with the Dorsets on the left, the Norfolks in the village itself and the Bedfords in the fields to the right:
Soon the British could see the Germans advancing once more. Fresh units from 93rd Chasseurs and two battalions from the newly arrived 86th Fusiliers. They deployed into line across the battlefield:
The third German attack began with heavy artillery fire on to the Norfolks position.
As the barrage lifeted 1/86th storm out of the woods and attack the Norfolks, who by now are beginning to suffer serious casualties:
At the same time, over on the right 2/93rd and 3/36th push forwards towards the Bedfords, who have almost lost half their number:
The battle had reached a crucial point. 1 Bedfords could collapse at any time, however, 1 Norfolks supported by the Dorsets rained a hail of bullets into 1/86th, who stalled, losing a quarter of their number:
The stall was turned ino a rout when when the 9th Lancers crashed into their right flank:
Over on the right, three troops of artillery and the remnants of the Bedfords poured fire into 2/93rd. The German casualty toll reaches close to 50% and the German commander decides to call a halt and regroup. Taking advantage of another lull in the fighting 15 Brigade slips away, leaving many casualties behind.  Over half of the Bedfords had been lost, a third of the Norfolks and about a quarter of the Dorsets - it had been a costly operation, but 5th Division had broken clean and 2 Corps was now approaching Le Cateau - for the next great action.

This battle attempts to capture the spirit of the BEF during the retreat from Mons - but the action at Ouevy Le Petit is a figment of my imagination. The figures are from my WW1 collection. They are mostly Airfix, Hat and some odds and ends, including several conversions.