The 1919 British Revolution

Across Europe in the early part of the 20th Century many of the nation states were undergoing change or violent revolution. The governments of the time were so concerned about this that resources were diverted to focus on the perceived threat of revolutionaries and paramilitary forces.

The 1917 Russian Revolution eventually led to the Communist USSR as well as a Civil War that raged for years with plenty of intervention by the Western powers.

In Germany following their defeat in 1918 led to the creation of the Weimar Republic that was plagued by political extremism. In addition that time saw both left wing and right wing paramilitaries causing problems for the government.

The capitulation and break up of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire also saw rises in nationalism and revolution.

In Great Britain the government feared a bolshevik uprising and was quick to oppress any potential threat to the established order. One of the biggest areas for concern were the labour movements and trade unions. One strike in Glasgow in 1919 eventually resulted in a street battle between strikers and police, which was so bad, the army was called in.

The “Battle of George Square”, also known as “Bloody Friday” and “Black Friday”, was one of the most intense riots in the history of Glasgow; it took place on Friday, 31 January 1919.

Clashes between the City of Glasgow Police and protesters broke out, prompting the War Cabinet to make soldiers available to the civil power, to prevent the violence from escalating.

Medium Mark C tanks and soldiers at the Glasgow Cattle Market in the Gallowgate

With troops and tanks on the streets of Glasgow, peace was eventually restored, but there were concerns that some of the soldiers might go over to the side of the rioters, could that have been the spark that started a British Revolution?

The fear of the soldiers siding with the protestors was so much that the War Department didn’t want any Glaswegian troops sent to quell the violence, incase they changed sides. Though reports later implied that English troops were sent, more recent research has indicated that it was Scottish troops that were sent to Glasgow. However what if English troops were sent and the situation rather than be defused, escalated into a more violent conflict. Would the conflict bring in local paramilitary forces, some fighting for the establishment and some fighting for change? Another potential spark for a British Revolution?

British army tank in Dublin

In future blog posts I want to have a look at potential battles in the 1919 British Revolution and the forces involved.

Down at the Tank Museum

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I’ve never been to the wargaming show at the Tank Museum before and it has been many years since I last visited the actual museum, but this year I did manage to get down to Bovington.

There is something rather inspiring about visiting a gaming show amongst the many different kinds of tanks and armoured cars on show. It’s one thing to see a 15 mm Tortoise on the table in an 1947 game and then just on the other side of the museum is the real prototype.

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I probably spent more time looking at the exhibits than looking at the games or shopping, but there are some great exhibits. Those first tanks from The Great War were those that impressed me the most.

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These metal monsters designed in an era when they didn’t really know what they were doing and there was a lot of trial and error. The Mark IX reminds us that the APC is as old as the tank.

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The exhibition is great because you can get right up and close to the tanks and you get a much better understanding of the strength but also the weaknesses of the armoured fighting vehicle. You can see how tall the Sherman was for example and why those flat sides were a real target for the panzerfaust armed Germans.

Having recently enjoyed the film Fury it was great to see the real star of that film, the M4A3E8 Sherman.

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On the gaming front, there were some great games on display.

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Lots of traders there too ready to take your money, though I went with some ideas of getting some Sarissa Precision models they weren’t in stock and no one had any Copplestone Castings, so in the end I got one of the new 4Ground The Chicago Way buildings and some 28mm Edwardian policemen.

1914 British Infantryman on guard with rifle and bayonet

There are four metal models from this range on the workbench. I gave the models a white undercoat. Here is one of the models, an infantryman on guard with rifle and bayonet.
1914 British Infantryman on guard with rifle and bayonet
1914 British Infantryman on guard with rifle and bayonet
I have been looking at a few online forums for guides on how to paint these. Going for a relatively simple and quick paint job, probably basecoat, webbing and other details, followed by a wash before final detailing.

1914 British Infantry

I have four metal models from this range that I bought some time ago, not sure if that was the only ones I bought or if I have merely mislaid and lost the others…. I thought I had ten, but there are only four.
I gave the models a white undercoat. Here is one of the models, an infantryman advancing.
1914 British Infantry
I will give the models a base coat of khaki next.
1914 British Infantry
I have been thinking about how I might use the models once I have finished painting them. I did think they would work well in a Victorian Science Fiction Scenario alongside my Steam Tank.
Another idea was to use them in a Doctor Who scenario fighting the Robot Mummies or the Cybermen. They are almost the right era for the Robot Mummies and would make for an interesting pre-UNIT or even Torchwood scenario.

Wargames Foundry British Infantry in Dress Cap (1914)

I have four metal models from this range that I bought some time ago, not sure if that was the only ones I bought or if I have merely mislaid and lost the others…. I thought I had ten, but there are only four.
Wargames Foundry British Infantry in Dress Cap (1914)
Wargames Foundry British Infantry in Dress Cap (1914)
The first stage will be to clean the casting and base them. I will then be following this painting guide from Foundry.
Wargames Foundry British Infantry in Dress Cap (1914)

Tanking in the Last Crusade

Tank from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

Though we know it wasn’t real, and though we know that there was no actual historical version of it; I am sure most of us who have thought about recreating the Indiana Jones films on the table have wanted to use that tank.

Yes the tank from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.

Tank from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

It appears at first glance to be a Mark VIII with a turret, the reality was that it was built specially for the film and was built up from an excavator.

Now regular readers of my blog may remember this photo.

The Talisman Archaeologist from Talisman Timescape

The Talisman Archaeologist from Talisman Timescape is very much an Indy lookalike and many years ago I started to formulate a series of rules and background for creating games in an Indiana Jones style universe that was called Tally Ho!

I always wanted to get a World War One era tank to fit into the game and recreate that battle with the tank from the Last Crusade film.

Well now I can get a 28mm tank just like that one from the film. Copplestone Castings have released the K64 Mark IX Beast Super-Heavy Tank and Accessory Pack.

Mark IX Beast

This is an almost perfect replica of that tank from that film.

Really impressed with the look and quality, might get one. As for rules, well I will probably mash up the rules from The Great War with the Old West. Or even just the Great War rules.

No More Warhammer Historical


It would appear that Games Workshop have closed down Warhammer Historical.
I have bought many of their publications in the past, really liked the production values, though I know many hard-core gamers looked down on the rules, I always thought that they were simple yet fun.
I should have guessed something was in the air when they did their relatively recent half-price sale. Then I got the new Great War supplement, the hardbacked Waterloo rules and the Old West expansion.

World War One Tanks

The Retronaut website has a great series of images of tanks from World War One in one of their recent blog posts.

If you are thinking about making some scenery for games in this period, these photographs really do give you some interesting ideas.
There are a fair few images of damaged or immobilised tanks and so again useful guidance when making abandoned tanks as scenic pieces.

Check out more images here.
If you want to see a fantastic looking demonstration game from World War One, then here are some photographs from Aly Morrison’s excellent game at GamesDay 2007.