Workbench Round up – first of the New Year!

My output continues at a steady pace, with my new war room and hobby station making my hobby life easier. The only issue is that there is no over arching theme to my modelling output. I continue to follow the threads from last year. So I have completed a unit of WOTR Pikemen, two characters from the Lord of the Rings collection and a Bren Carrier!

Another unit to add to the army!

The Pikemen were kindly given to me already assembled and primed ( thank you Jaz!), so painting them was straight forward. I used a white and green livery, for no other reason than I liked the combination. This Livery is mostly associated with the Welsh Tudors, although there were plenty of other Welsh houses who sided with the Yorkist cause and indeed, quite a few minor houses in England that had white and green as their colours. I’m not too concerned that my units should represent a particular faction. I’m happy to play fictional battles and scenarios rather than re-fight actual battles. So don’t be surprised if you see this unit marching with Sir Harry Hotspur!

Foundry Pikemen from Duncan’s collection

I’ve also re-based and re-touched another unit of pikemen that came from Duncan Mcfarlanes collection. I still need to add the pikes as the originals have been lost but I have replacements ready. I think that they are Foundry figures and I hope that they will continue to do battle in Duncans memory.

Ugluk of the Uruk-Hai
Grishnakh – basing not quite completed in this photo

I’ve continued with my ‘Battle Games in Middle Earth’ project, painting another three character figures. Ugluk, Grishnakh and mounted Eomer are now completed and in the cabinet. Of the three, I found Eomer the most challenging. Painting his armour was quite difficult as it is fairly intricate and his horse is also a strange grey – dark grey at the back and light grey up front! I’m not entirely happy with this model but he will do for now! I’ve now reached issue 18 of the Magazine and as issue 19 came with paints rather than a figure, I am about 20% of the way through the collection. When I complete the figures with issue 20 ( more Goblins), I’ll have a round up of my progress.

Eomer – basing to be finished

The bren carrier was the next on the work bench and was bit of a trial for no other reason than my airbrush seems to have developed a fault in the compressor. I just about managed to get the basic colours on the Carrier before the compressor gave up. The model is from Curteys 1st Corps and although not as precise as, say , the Tamiya 1/48th kit, it builds into a nice replica and of course is ideal for the wargames table. The markings, as with all of my WW2 armour are conjectural and not based on an actual vehicle. I have hand painted them, apart from the vehicle serial number.

Bren Carrier

Whilst purists might not like the idea of making up markings, it’s my way of ensuring that I get models finished rather than endlessly researching them to get every detail exactly correct. For me, the models are simply a representation of their type rather than an exact replica. Whilst I have total admiration for those modellers that are able to produce museum quality replica’s, exact in every detail, I have very little time for those in the hobby who seem to know everything but produce nothing – their hobby is different to mine!

Bren Carrier side view

To be fair, it’s this attitude that allows me to get my projects off of the work bench and onto the gaming table. I have been largely cured of my desire to seek perfection by my wargaming buddies, who favour practical solutions over fancy models! A great example of this is the latest game that we are playing – Never Mind The Boat Hooks – Billhooks on the sea! Andy Callan has very cleverly adapted his rule set and produced some Medieval Cogs from wood and corrugated card board. This meant that we were play testing and having fun rather than still thinking about how to make the models.

Never Mind The Boat Hooks…coming soon… early play test

Here’s a sneak peak but in my next blog I hope to show you a bit more progress!

The Sarissa Precision Cog on my work bench.


I hope that you all enjoy your hobby as much as I do – remember that our web site will have much of what you need! Click here to see our shop:


Happy Modelling!

Seasons Greetings and Happy New Year!

I may be a bit late with my New Year blog and end of year review but better late than not at all, I guess. I had hesitated when trying to decide how I would write a review of the year, hence the late entry. There have been some challenging times during 2021 that I have had to navigate. It felt like that even in a modelling blog, I should set my hobby in the context of some of these events. After much thought I have decided against this approach. Those that know me personally will be aware of them and those that don’t, will not need to hear of the personal challenges that I faced. I am sure that they have had plenty of their own ‘dragons’ to slay.

One consistent help through all of the year has been my hobby. It provides me with a respite and escape from the ‘real world’ and some semblance of control over at least a small part of it. I can only wish that you enjoy your hobby as much as I do and derive the same sense of satisfaction. So without further introspection and with time to fill on a rainy Saturday morning, here’s how I spent my time at the hobby work bench in 2021.

The Gaming year continued to be dominated by ‘Never Mind The Bill Hooks’. Although I had thought that my WOTR army was complete, I still continued to add to it. Without the need to produce units for actual gaming, I was free to take on some side projects such as Artillery, Baggage wagons and some of the more unusual troop types.

Bombard complete!
Completed Landsknechts
The finished Kern War band
The ox cart for my baggage train

As well as the War of The Roses, my attempt to paint all of the miniatures that came with the Part work/magazine ‘Battle games in Middle Earth’ continued. As of last night, I had reached magazine number 16 and completed Ugluk, the Uruk Hai Captain. He is pictured below – not quite finished as the basing needs to be completed. I’ve also pictured some of my other models for this collection.

Saruman – issue 14
Ugluk – with his bren carrier….

As you can see, I am also gradually adding to my Word War Two collection. This year, I added a Cromwell, Churchill and Beaverette Armoured Car as well as a couple of Home Guard units – A Northover Projector and a Blacker Bombard.

Churchill ready for action.
Beaverette Armoured Car

Ny Napoleonic collection wasn’t entirely forgotten. I added some commanders, a Vignette and a Battalion of KGL.

Secure the Colour!
New Command bases added.
8th Battalion KGL

And finally, I manged to paint Mr Giraffe, who had been stood on the workbench for over two years…

Mr Giraffe!

Those are just some of my favourite models The actual count stands at 170 infantry figures, 8 Cavalry, 14 Personalities, 4 Artillery pieces, 3 Wagons, 4 Draft Horses, 4 Oxen, 6 Pavises, 3 Tanks, 1 Armoured Car and 1 Giraffe! All painted and based and housed in their new home.

Which brings me on to the most important development of the year in my hobby life – My very own war games and hobby room. Yes at the tender age of 64, I finally have my own hobby space into which I can relax and paint and game. It’s been a long time coming but is certainly a highlight in the year. I still have work to do to finish it but it is gradually taking shape. Even better, I have a home for my collection.

My new painting station.
My Figure cabinets – nearly filled already!

To bring this blog to an end, I must add that I have also managed to enjoy a fair number of games, both with my regular Gaming Buddies, Pete and Andy and with other good friends. Perhaps the highlight for me was the Bill Hooks Bash, organised by ‘Other Pete Harris’ over in Derby. The day encapsulated the very best of the social side of the hobby. A full day of gaming against various opponents , all of whom were friendly, gracious and made the day inspirational. As the song goes, ‘One day like this a year will see me right’

Billhooks Bash


I hope that you all enjoy your hobby as much as I do – remember that our web site will have much of what you need! Click here to see our shop:


Happy Modelling!