I bought a Scottish Croft for only £1

F52B3A43-75EF-4BCD-8A1F-F39E4FBEFE2D

After a cool early morning stroll through my nearest local village I walked past a fundraising car boot sale. I was tempted to start a small Sylvanian Army by equipping small furry clothed creatures with shields, swords and spears (Redwall style) but kindly left them all to be discovered with delight by a  local child.

Instead I bought a Scottish Croft for a Pound.

F52B3A43-75EF-4BCD-8A1F-F39E4FBEFE2D

Thankfully I don’t now have to upsticks and move Northwards to embrace the Good Life of Self Sufficiency anytime soon, only to find both the off-grid smallholding novelty and the delusion wear out quickly. Then write a book about it.

Or maybe not – because it is a very very tiny Croft House and a very small piece of land. It also comes with a tiny flock of sheep built in!

01F26E79-93C8-4504-918C-71487AF6ECE5

Instead I moved in some suitably tiny tenants into this little resin Lilliput Lane building – some of my vintage 15mm Peter Laing 1715 or 45 Rising figures. I’m not too sure if they are happy about the sheep or the related Highland Clearances that will follow in the next century.

These 15mm Peter Laing highlanders that I bought as a youngster are here:
https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2016/11/04/more-peter-laing-scots/
https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2016/10/24/all-about-the-base-about-the-base/

Those precious few Peter Laing sheep have a lot to answer for! Posted when I thought only had one surviving 15mm sheep: https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2016/06/29/peter-laing-sheep/

Crofting, Clearances, Sheep or People?
The Highland Clearances (or  the “eviction of the Gaels”) were the forced evictions of many tenants in the Scottish Highlands and Islands, mostly in the period 1750 to 1860.

“After the initial swift and bloodthirsty retribution for the Jacobite rebellions, laws were instigated to prevent any further groundswell of support for the previous monarchs. In 1747 ‘The Act of Proscription’ was passed. Clan tartan had become popular during the Jacobite years and this was outlawed under this new act, as were bagpipes and the teaching of Gaelic. The Act was a direct attack on the Highland culture and way of life, and attempted to eradicate it from a modern and Hanoverian-loyal Scotland.”

So says:
https://www.historic-uk.com/HistoryUK/HistoryofScotland/The-Highland-Clearances/

The article continues:  “It was not only Highland culture that disappeared over this period but also the Highlanders themselves, for the most prosaic of reasons: money. It was deduced by those landowners on whose lands the clans lived and worked, that sheep were exponentially more financially productive than people. The wool trade had begun to boom and there was literally more value in sheep than people. So, what followed was an organized and intentional removal of the population from the area. In 1747, another Act was passed, the ‘Heritable Jurisdictions Act’, which stated that anyone who did not submit to English rule automatically forfeited their land: bend the knee or surrender your birthright …”

The hundred or so years between 1750 and 1860 saw the bulk of the Highland Clearances, forced eviction from farms or a move into alternative Crofting tenancies. For many, it led to eventual forced emigration to avoid famine and failed industries like kelp farming. It is still an emotive area of many people’s family histories scattered around the world. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highland_Clearances

So a Scottish Croft for only an English Pound has a lot of complex and partisan economic, social, colonial and military history lurking behind it.

With such big spending, I could have posted this blog post on Pound Store Plastic Warriors.

Two other wargames blogs on a 1:72 Jacobite theme

Rod’s interesting Airfix conversions https://rodwargaming.wordpress.com

Tony Kitchen at Tin Soldiering On http://tonystoysoldiers.blogspot.com/search/label/The%2045

For more of my Lilliput Lane buildings of this sadly vanished uk manufacturer: https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2017/06/11/lilliput-lane-buildings-for-15mm-figures/

Now back to researching those early Scouting handbooks and Wide Games scenarios. Scottish Scouts were allowed to wear kilts.

EDFC1372-D702-4B65-920F-250834A05E95
Image source: Pinterest

Blog posted by Mark Man of
TiN on 28 July 2019

Advertisements

New Prince August Flats 60mm Queens Guards Moulds

IMG_1093

New at Prince August the curiously sized 60mm and flat Queen’s  Guards mould https://shop.princeaugust.ie/british-queens-guard-flat-60mm-scale-mould/

They look quite charming. I like these poses – marching, firing, advancing, bayonet drill –  but not sure yet if I will order any. Are they going to produce any more 60mm flat figures?

img_1094.png

Other old plastic Crescent 60mm semi flat figures or older large metal flats up to 60mm could be drafted in as opposition.

Like I need a new size of soldiers to collect. Resisting shiny. Resisting shiny.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN 22 July 2019

Landing Craft (Carton)

IMG_1085

How to avoid landfill and land your pound store plastic warriors on the beach – cross posted from my other blog:

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/milk-carton-creation-no-1-cheap-landing-craft/

IMG_1064
Hit the beach, fellas! 

Raid the fridge and get cutting. Enjoy! Posted by Mark Man of TIN 21 July 2019

Star Trek Cart … to boldly go etc.

AE2A74FE-93C5-4A52-94B7-4C73ED239790

As everyone goes a little Apollo 11 crazy, here is my contribution to the 50th Anniversary of the Man on the Moon.

A star trek cart … for pioneers … to boldly go etc. etc …

well it’s not a million miles from the Apollo 15 1971 space buggies.

In place of the usual scout trek cart that I posted about here:

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2019/07/17/have-trek-cart-will-travel/

here is my ‘star trek cart’ with my 32mm space trooper conversions from Pound Store Plastic penny figures and Le Toy Van rocket.

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/11/05/poundland-space-marines-platoon-on-parade

No doubt it would have been far more sensible to post pictures of Airfix’s famous Astronauts recently reissued in their Vintage Classics: https://www.airfix.com/uk-en/astronauts 

88AD46CB-919D-47C3-8E36-36BBA4634A28

http://www.plasticsoldierreview.com/Review.aspx?id=422

Posted 50 years after Apollo 11 Eagle moon landing by Mark Man of TIN on 20/21 July 2019

The Legendary Wood Screw Miniature Army of Tony Adams

IMG_1020
Scratchbuilt limbers and bowsers to accompany Tony Adam’s  woodscrew army 

Crossposted from my sister blog – enjoy!

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2019/07/19/design-ideas-from-the-legendary-woodscrew-wargames-army/

 

Have Trek Cart, Will Travel …

EB74556C-367D-4672-8C89-93F7A57CF5D5
Bob a Job for the War Office? Phoenix 43 range (S and D models) scout trek cart, scouts and scoutmaster group. Crate – old Tamiya  1:35 stock.
BB21BF75-D137-4170-93DD-E3A55D8C1EE5
My recent broken figure conversions to Girl Scouts admire the Trek Cart
89DD5612-011C-4879-83CA-3BAEBD656873
Beautifully detailed moulded figures with scout badges and all …

I have pretty much finished painting my Trek Cart scout group of Phoenix 43 figures, apart from gloss varnishing them.

img_1591
1\43 Phoenix 43 S and D Models Scouts and Trek Cart

At first it looked a little fiddly but fitted together well with little flash.

img_9562

The Trek or Trek Cart is mentioned in very early Scout cigarette cards.

5F7A6EAB-7F71-4C5C-ADBB-79501D55B4D3
First series Ogden’s  cigarette  cards – Boy Scout Series 1 to 5 Cigarette Card Images, an internet book / reprint by Trading Card Enterprises, LLC

It is also pictured as an iconic bit of scout history in the 1990 Cub Scout Handbook history of Scouting pages:

34981B9F-13CB-4AF5-BB2B-776FF03A52DF
Baden-Powell’s Mafeking idea of ‘Model Soldiers’
FEBB3922-2B3B-45FF-914B-D7B24A68B502
An interesting conversion idea for a Boy Scout patrol with turbans – plenty of world Boy Scout uniforms on cigarette cards on Pinterest. Cub Scout Handbook, 1990.
8C1369C6-7351-4331-8456-357BE795E9F1
Close up of the trek cart picture illustration 1990 by Martin Aitchison

Search around and you will find that trek carts were once quite iconic for the scout movement, such as this book cover illustration.

img_1637

Pinterest is a useful source of images and there are Trek Cart sections on there,  from which I have taken some screen-shots as  reference pictures for painting my trek cart model.

img_9560
The dark green works well as a scout colour (Pinterest image source)
img_9553
Bright and colourful Trek Cart paint scheme
img_9558
Good design  and colour references for vintage trek carts from a Pinterest search.
img_9561
S and D models Phoenix 43 Trek Cart No. OF154

I chose a dark green Gloss simple paint scheme for my trek cart  with no wording.

The trek cart or baggage waggon train provides a good target or focus for many Wide Games / tabletop gaming scenarios.

img_3414

Lots more Trek Cart stories and images at http://www.shurdington.org/Scouts/Trekcart.htm

I never made the link between scout trek carts and the Wild West type pioneer trek carts featured in this episode of Mormon and American West history.

img_9559
Recreating the Mormon pioneer treks of the 1840s

This is a pioneer story as gripping and tragic as that of the Oregon Trail.

“To cut down on expensive wagons and oxen, some 3,000 of the [Mormon] pioneers subsequently used low-cost wooden handcarts that were light enough to be pulled across the Great Plains. One family or five individuals were assigned to a handcart, with 18 to 20 people sharing a tent. A cart hauled no more than 200 pounds — about 17 pounds of baggage per person.  Each highly organized company was led by an experienced guide and was accompanied by at least four oxen-drawn supply wagons.

The first party of handcarts set out from Iowa City, Iowa, on 9 June 1856 with a company of 266 people from England, followed two days later by a second company of just over 200.  These early handcart brigades successfully arrived in the Salt Lake Valley, but the trips were not easy. Pioneer journals recorded harsh weather, the threat of hostile Indians, the death of fellow travelers and the ongoing hardships of hunger and fatigue.”

https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/pioneer-trek

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mormon_handcart_pioneers

The Mormon pioneer treks of American history are often recreated as part of youth camping activities within this church, pictured and described here:

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/youth/activities/stake-and-multistake-activities/camps-and-youth-conferences/treks?lang=eng&country=am

There is also a Wikipedia article on the Mormon Handcart Pioneers https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mormon_handcart_pioneers

As mentioned before, the Man of TIN blog supports no particular faith denomination. All are welcome at the Man of TIN blog.

Trek carts which disassembled were made in the early William Britain’s Boy Scouts Range, seen here featured in James Opie’s Britain’s Toy Soldiers 1893 – 1932: 

F298DC03-EE87-488B-9689-4862D8E01B71
Two of my repaired Broken Britain’s 54mm  Scouts beside Britain’s Trek Cart  pictures in James Opie’s book.

Trek Carts can also be found in smaller OOHO  railway scale figures by Modelscene / Peco.

img_3426-1

img_3427
OOHO Modelscene Peco railway series trek cart and Scouts with berets

A historical Huzzah for the humble Trek Cart!

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN, 15 July 2019.

Rosemary Sutcliff Birth Centenary December 2020

IMG_1042

About 18 months ago I re-read Rosemary Sutcliff’s first book The Eagle of The Ninth for the first time since childhood. I also had strong memories of this Roman adventure story set beyond Hadrian’s  Wall in Scotland from the late 1970s BBC Children’s / Family TV serial version.

IMG_1041

I was reminded of this book by Alan Gruber the Duchy of Tradgardland blog’s latest SPQR related Roman scenario   http://tradgardland.blogspot.com/2019/07/warriors-looked-out-awaiting-arrival-of.html

IMG_1045.JPG
A brief biography …

How the book was written or inspired:

IMG_1044

IMG_1043

IMG_1046
C. Walter Hodges’ illustrations

A suitably mountainous pine tree background with some of my Toyway 54mm Romans.

IMG_1036.JPG

December 2020 is Rosemary Sutcliff’s birth centenary. There are several interesting blogs about her including sporadic ones by Anthony Lawton, her godson and literary executor:

https://therosemarysutcliffarchive.wordpress.com

Oxford University Press have a few,  sadly very few,  of her most popular titles in print:

https://global.oup.com/education/content/children/authors/rosemary-sutcliff/?region=uk

Rosemary Sutcliff  has a good extensive Wikipedia entry with links

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosemary_Sutcliff

Blue Remembered website has several years of blog posts  up to 2017 written by Sandra Garside-Neville and Sarah Cuthbertson, two fans of her work http://blueremembered.blogspot.com

https://sutcliff.fandom.com/wiki/Sutcliff_Wiki

http://www.historicalnovels.info/Rosemary-Sutcliff.html

Hang on a minute, I ask myself, weren’t you working on Scouting Wide Games?

F480A87B-DCAE-4497-8075-289B4AF4277D
Suggested reading for Boy Scouts for imaginative Wide Games personas  -Wide Games 1931

This is not a million miles from my Scouting Wide Games as some of the recommended imaginative historical reading for  “The Cloak of Romance” section of Scouting Wide Games includes authors that Sutcliff’s admired.  Rosemary Sutcliff also liked Kipling’s historical romance Puck of Pook’s Hill.

The historicalnovels.info webpage mentions:

“Sutcliff felt a particular affinity with Rudyard Kipling. His work, especially his collected stories Puck of Pook’s Hill, aroused her interest in the way a conquered land can become “heart-home” to its conquerors, as seen in The Eagle of the Ninth and epitomised by Kipling’s poem “The Roman Centurion’s Song”. 

I think Rosemary Sutcliff’s work and Henry Treece books have probably inspired the odd Wide Game Scouting scenario.

One great fun 54mm Roman Wargames website to explore is By Toutatis! or Romans Go Home by Allan Tidmarsh channels Asterix http://romansgohome.blogspot.com

IMG_2803

For the last 18 months I have had a Roman “Close Wars” Skirmish idea focussed on troops vs natives nicknamed Full Metal Hic Jacet

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/full-metal-hic-jacet/

Other equally spurious projects have got in the way a bit.

IMG_1047.JPG

Teutoburg Forest AD 9 (Osprey) was one example of an Eagle of the Ninth style disaster.

The  Marcus Didius Falco detective series set in Ancient Rome  has similar disbanded and destroyed legions. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marcus_Didius_Falco

To end …

Some more gratuitous pictures of Peter Laing Romans (painted by Stuart Asquith!)

IMG_2827IMG_2828IMG_2831IMG_2832IMG_2829IMG_2830IMG_2835IMG_2836

IMG_2817
Peter Laing 15mm catalogue extract

So there you are, another cheerfully rambling blog post about toy soldiers and books.

Blog posted by Mark, Man of TIN on 16/17 July 2019.