Sunday, 13 September 2015

Funny Little Wars - Waterloo 200 game

Yesterday saw 9 enthusiasts meet in a London park for the long awaited Waterloo 200th Anniversary Celebration Wargame.  The sun shone as 2,000 54mm toy soldiers were unpacked and positioned to refight the battles of  Wavre and Waterloo across two vast windswept fields.  I've always thought the importance of Wavre was rather underrated in the potential importance and significance it had on the outcome of the 100 days campaign, so I was glad to see it included in this event.  The players commanding on the Waterloo field set up their respective troops while the Wavre Battle was played out and therefore didn't know whether it would be Blucher's Prussians or Grouchy's French that would arrive to take part in the main event.

This isn't a battle report (look out for a full report on the Megablitz and More blog, see blog list to the left) just gratuitous pictures of some lovely toy soldiers out in the grass on a sunny day.

French light cavalry and horse artillery approach Mont St. Jean, in the background is the chateau of Hougoumont

A closer look at Hougoumont defended by British and Allied troops on the right flank

The farmhouse of La Haye Sainte viewed from Mont St Jean, beyond it is the sandpit defended by the 95th Rifles.   The flags in the background represent troops which are not yet visible to the enemy, some may be dummy markers.

French infantry and artillery deploy before La Haye Sainte, further back on the road Napoleon and his staff  confer at the Inn of La Belle Alliance

Allied artillery dominate the centre of the field from the heights of Mont St Jean, the much vaunted new fangled Rocket Battery proved devastatingly ineffective!

French cavalry masses on the plain before Mont St Jean

The charge is sounded

The infantry calmly form into square to meet the thundering tide of French cavalry

The squares hold as the horsemen surge around them

The cavalry reform for another attempt

The steady British infantry await the next wave


The Prussians arrive 

The Prussian artillery opens up.....

....in support of the cavalry

The final act on the plains before Mont St Jean, the massed cavalry clash

The melee continues for several rounds 

Until both sides brake off  and retire

The field of battle was so large that you couldn't follow anything that was going on elsewhere, only the the action you were immediately involved with, and that's how it should be.  So this is just a flavour of the biggest game we've played to date and no doubt there will be reports on the many other actions played popping up elsewhere on the blogosphere like here on Wargaming Miscellany.

That's all for now folks!

16 comments:

  1. Nice - a wonderful way to enjoy the sunshine.

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    1. I can't think of any better, and we get few enough days of sunshine in England!

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  2. Absolutely stunning, I've already planned out an order for Mr Weston for a pile of 1/32 Napoleonics after seeing these pictures.

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    1. You can never have too many toy soldiers!

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  3. It was certainly a grand day Brian - and you took some splendid photos.

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    1. It was a grand day.....the aching muscles in my legs and back are testament to that.

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  4. Magnificent! Wonderful spirit shown by all.
    (and Damn the width of that ocean!l.

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    1. You were with us in plastic if not in person, look out for some of your chaps in the garrison at Hougoumont.

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  5. Truly awesome Brian! An excellent tribute to that important day. Thank you for the pictures and inspiration to do something similar on a much smaller scale!

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    1. Inspiration is to scale as one is to three, I think Napoleon said that.....or if not he should have done.

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  6. Brian,

    It was great to meet you and to wargame alongside you and Conrad Kinch. Despite what the umpires said, I feel that we had fought the French to a standstill, and that the arrival of the Prussians would have guaranteed an Allied victory.

    I love your photographs, and I suspect that between us we will have a detailed photographic record of this most memorable wargame.

    I look forward to meeting you again soon.

    All the best,

    Bob

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    1. It was a pleasure to make the acquaintance of you fine Gentlemen, and I'd like to thank you both for the guidance you gave me on the day...but lets not be too harsh on the Umpire, after a long day toiling in the hot sun the poor chap had clearly lost his wits.

      Grand days like this are few enough and I'm certainly looking forward to more of the same.

      Best wishes, Brian

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  7. Glorious!! This post has made my day (if not week!). What a sight! Thank you for sharing this!

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    1. Thank you, and may I return the compliments after viewing your Battling with Britains blog.

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