Earlier this year, fellow gamer and modeller Chris Kirk showed how he intended to build an infantry square to use as a marker when playing Black Powder. You can see the first blog article here where Chris explained how he would convert the models:
The model is now finished and as you can see, it looks very nice indeed!
Chris decided to paint the figures as 27th Regiment, the Inniskillings. The 27th is famous for the stand that they made at Waterloo. Towards the end of the battle, they had moved up to take position just to the left of the crossroads, some 200 hundred yards behind La Haye Sainte which had by now fallen to the attacking French. They were ordered by Sir James Kempt not to abandon their position and to hold at all costs as their presence would stop the French infantry from further penetration of the British centre.
This left them terribly exposed to both the French tirailleurs who had taken position on the small knoll to the side of La Haye Sainte and from the French artillery that had moved up in support. The casualty rate for the 27th was horrendous. Without moving a step the regiment lost over two thirds of it’s men, the highest casualty rate for any British Battalion that fought at Waterloo. The Battalion was commanded at the Battle by a Captain, John Hare. There were 19 officers in total, of which sixteen were killed or wounded. Of the total of 747 men in the battalion, 493 were killed or wounded in a matter of hours and yet still they stood in position, holding the line.
The lady in the model represent one of the remarkable stories of Waterloo. In the midst of the carnage unfolding in the square was a soldiers wife, who though pregnant, had refused to go to the rear and stayed with her husband. She busied herself attending to the wounded until she herself was struck in the leg by a shell splinter. Her poor husband faired even worse, losing both of his arms.
The model, as well as being a practical gaming piece will serve as a small reminder of the bravery of the 27th. The idea of such a model is that it will be used on the table and not just appear in a glass cabinet. Chris and I had quite a discussion about such ‘practical dioramas’ that allow the gamer to stray beyond just churning out regiments to fill the battlefield. The square marker is just one of these ideas – others will follow!