BP, Tramping, Spies and Steam: Steam and Countryside Fair 2019

4529EE4B-B749-4DC6-94DB-62AF649C60CD

A clever way to display your Britain’s vintage lead farm, which I spotted  at a recent West Country steam and countryside fair, full of steam traction, threshing machines and vintage tractors.

Rain flap on the gazebo at the front, anti-pilfer netting, caravan at the back.

IMG_1281

A  relaxing way to show your treasures.

I was flagging by the time I found this display to chat to the owner (who was no doubt having a cuppa in the back). I was also fending off roving Mad Hatters and White Rabbits on stilts at the time.  Theatricals! But that’s another story …

Here is my Steam Fair Haul 2019: https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2019/08/21/steam-fair-haul-2019/

249F33A7-453D-4A4F-8C41-38AE82350E11
Close up – The non-PC rare Village Idiot and the colourful tramp with spotty bundle.

Tramping
This week I was presented with a little gift from my family who spotted him on  a market stall in town. It was this lovely John Hill / Johillco tramp with red and white spotty  handkerchief.

What could the tramp be in a gaming scenario?

IMG_1277

Maybe the tramp is  good cover for a spy, someone from out of town who can come and go, chat to all whilst begging a little bit of  bread and some cheese and slowly gather information without being noticed.

This photo story is inspired by the tiny ‘photo drama’ blog posts of Alan the Tradgardmastre, https://tradgardland.blogspot.com
Allan Tidmarsh at http://dorset1940.blogspot.com/2019/07/something-in-woods.html (Scouts!)
and Tony Kitchen at Tin Soldiering On http://tonystoysoldiers.blogspot.com/2019/08/a-cunning-plan.html

IMG_1286
The tramp is spotted by a passing Boy Scout.  The Boy Scout has noticed this tramp before hanging around near the local aerodrome and army camp.
IMG_1287
The scout reports his suspicions to a passing Scoutmaster, who just happens to be Baden Powell. Coincidence?
IMG_1288
Hopefully the tramp doesn’t spot Baden Powell or the Boy Scout. Have you spotted them?
IMG_1289
Master of self defence, BP is already prepared to tackle this character and will send the Boy Scout for reinforcements as needed.
IMG_1290
Before they can arrest him, the tramp rushes into the bushes and with a quick turn of the coat, transforms himself with a quick change into … master of disguise and retired sleuth Sherlock Holmes. He had been testing the security of local defence establishments.

The characters: BP Scoutmaster by Dorset Soldiers, Sherlock Holmes by Tradition and Boy Scout Vintage Britain’s 54mm hollowcast.

I was reminded of the tramp story mentioned in Scouting for Boys Part 1 and also by the final Sherlock Holmes story set in WW1,  His Last Bow.

IMG_1313

I was also reminded of Baden Powell’s book My Life As as Spy (1915) published during WW1 where he showed how he concealed maps within nature drawings of leaves, butterflies  and moths when scouting the Balkans in the late Nineteenth Century. Download the book at: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/15715

https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/the-founder-of-the-boy-scouts-hid-maps-in-insect-drawings

https://www.mnn.com/lifestyle/arts-culture/blogs/founder-boy-scouts-was-spy-he-used-nature-help-his-cause

Scouting Wide games posts: https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/wide-games-scouting-games-page/
Blog posted by Mark, Man of TIN, August 2019.

BP BPS Blog Post Script
Maudlin Jack Tar and Ian Joppy Jopson commented on the tramp espionage angle and tramp signs: here is the tramp signs published in the 1908 Scouting for Boys and 1912 Girl Guide handbook How Girls Can Help to Build Up The Empire.
IMG_1318.PNG

The Girl Guide version 1912 has the added safety warning for unchaperoned young lady Scouts: “Be cautious in asking the way. Passers-by will often tell you wrong, and if an enemy, they would purposefully mislead you.”

Designed as a universal language of scouting, mention is made of hostile and ‘Foreign Scouts’ or Guides were presumably other patrols from out of area rather than overseas ones.

The “I have gone home sign” (circle with a central dot) is touchingly inscribed or carved on the gravestone of Baden Powell (d.1941) and his wife Olave (died 1977/78) in Kenya.

IMG_1319

Excellent article mentioned by Alan Gruber on the Spycyclist stories and rumours of the late 1930s attached to wandervogeling Hitler Youth (which took over ‘officially’ from prewar German scouting) visiting Britain on supposedly friendly visits to British scout groups. Surely some game scenarios there!

Steam Fair Haul 2019

IMG_1264

Just one part of my Steam Fair haul for 2019. Crossposted from my sister blog – steam wagons, vintage plastic – what’s not to like? https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2019/08/21/steam-fair-haul-2019/

Enjoy! Cross Posted by Mark Man of TIN, 22 August 2019