I'm talking about my WSS Anglo-Dutch.
I painted this army in my first year at university. So that would make them well over 30 years old. They were painted in record time during, I think, Easter vacation. I remember painting them in a very short time, and I remember it being sunny when I did so. So I reckon Easter, not Christmas. Certainly not summer.
Anyway, why did the army come about? Simple answer, - I needed an army so I could get a game at the university club. Prior to going to university I'd done a lot of fantasy wargaming with Middle Earth armies using the Minifig "ME" range, so I took these up with my home made adapted rules. I discovered in short order that the club did not do fantasy. It only did proper historical games. I got a few games by taking along my ancient naval ships, but I needed to branch out. Pete Berry, now of Baccus fame, was at this time obsessing about the Great Northern War and Charles XII and had an army based upon Spencer Smith plastic figures. No one had an army to give him a game. I'd always had a passing interest in the career of the first Duke or Marlborough, so I said I'd put together an English army.
On getting home I ransacked my airfix collection and tapped up my main wargaming friend at home for spare figures. At this point I was working to the theory that what really counts for wargaming figures is the hat. If that's right most people won't notice the rest.
|Royal Orkney's in that odd pose|
|Massed heavy dragoons|
Finally a composite battalion of grenadiers was added, made up from the eponymous airfix packet, with bearskins carved into mitres.
My painting guide was Rene North's "Military Uniforms" from the Hamlyn all-coloured paperback range, supplemented by the newly published Osprey "Marlborough's Army", - which I suspect might have been the first Osprey MAA book I ever bought. My painiting style was "minimalist" and I ignored most of the carved detail on the figures.
|English battalion, with home drawn flag.|
By my final year it had almost been retired as we moved on to other things, but I kept it as it really had no value to anyone else.
Fast forward possibly 20 years and I find that the WA & Cuirassier figures have been re-released. It doesn't take long to decide I'll at last put together a French Louis XIV army to face my Anglo-Dutch, although they didn't get much use due to a lack of satisfaction with rules.
|Massed English foot|
|The Dutch, with flags from Warflag.com|