Sunday 14 May 2017

Carronade, 13 May 2017 - show AAR

It was Carronade in Falkirk on Saturday and for the first time I was able to attend. We arranged a long weekend based in Stirling which is only 20 minutes from Falkirk, booking into the lovely and very well placed Royal Highland Hotel, just 200 yards from Stirling castle.

So, on arriving at the event the very first person I bumped into was Falkirk club member my old friend Douglas Thomson, whom I'd lost touch with when he moved away from the NE for a job in the Far East. Then we had a long chat with David Bickley and Phil Robinson, and I was able to unload a large bag of Eureka French Revolutionary War figures that I'd picked up for him at Salute after we put in a joint order to get round the postage and customs charges and also get a 20% discount for buying, between us, more than AUS$300 worth of goodies. I dropped a box of figures off at Northumbrian Painting Services, a company I cannot recommend enough in terms of the quality of the finished product and importantly value for money. Doing the rounds during the course of the day I pretty much wore my voice out chatting to loads of friends and acquaintances, many of whom I don't see from one wargames show to the next but are able to almost pick up a conversation where we left it the last time we'd met.

Katherine had arranged to meet up with Dave Jarvis as she's going to produce a new "all singing all dancing" website for him to support his figure painting business. She has a great deal of experience in marketing, promotional stuff and website design and now she's a lady of leisure offers her services for free to a select few. She even maintains the sites once they're up and running.

I took a few photos during the course of the day, but had to resort to using my phone as my camera chose to die on me right at the start of the day! I should have checked the battery I suppose. I have to say that in my opinion the quality of the games was very good. There were some outstanding games, and many that it was clear that more than a little effort had been put into putting them on. Didn't see much in the way of 2' x 2' boutique games and the vast majority were the staple of what a good wargames event should be, i.e. 'proper' wargames. There was no show guide or map so if I've wrongly attributed anything I do apologise.

 This first shot is of my old club the Durham Wargames Group, and their 42mm Spanish Civil War game, put on by Conrad Cairns. There are more photos of this game later but for me this was one of two stand out games at the event, based on my criteria of visual impact, visible effort (just about everything was scratch build by Conrad) and tidiness. Not a cup, can of pop or piece of paper in sight!
 I think this game was by the Falkirk Club. Italians v Greeks and British in the Aegean I think. I liked it anyway, although the table edges were a bit cluttered.

 These three photos are of an excellent Wars of the Roses game. Some beautiful figures, some very nice terrain items and an excellent church complete with some unfortunate person being defenestrated from the top of the bell tower.
 A WW2 Staligrady-type game, with lots of action and flashing lights.

 A 'proper' war-game staged by the guys of the Westerhope Wargames Group. All the figures are 42mm Prinz August home casts and they are gorgeous! I had a long chat with a couple of the players and for them, and for me, this is what gets my juices going, a big game, a visual treat, glorious colours and loads of shiny toy soldiers. More flashing lights too!
 This next lot are of the GNW game put on by The League of Augsberg group, Barry Hilton (very distinguished looking with his goatee) and pals. Lovely figures, some smashing vignettes and probably the best artillery battery I've seen on a wargames table. 
 This was a big 18th 6mm game. It looked good but for the life of me I can't remember what it was and who put it on. 
 More shots of the best game of the day for me, Durham's SCW game in 42mm. All the buildings have been scratch built, as was the armoured train and the vehicles were all conversions or scratch built. All of it by Conrad, who would get my 12 points for enthusiasm and focus, especially as he dressed for the occasion as a Socialist militia man!

This was a really very nice AWI game but one thing spoilt it for me. The figures were well painted and stood out, the terrain was colourful and looked good, but the table edges were such a mess, with cans of Irn Bru, water, Mars bars and all sorts of stuff cluttering the table. (I edited out the can of Irn Bru in the last photo as it kind of spoilt the look of the fort, although the Mars bar had to remain).

Overall this was a better show than the last one I attended (Salute) if only because I preferred the standard of the games. It was an excellent day out and definitely one for the calendar next year. I didn't buy much and actually left with less figures than I arrived with! A few more 1790's English, some sailors off Grubby's Miniatures for my frigate, some Perry sailors hauling on ropes, again for 1799, and a few bits of terrain.

Next week, all things being equal, I shall be going to Partizan. Can't wait.


  1. Partizan ...... Oooh the new Napoleonic rules from Dave Brown (system like Pickets Charge) are being released at Newark.

  2. Good to meet up and chat. Thanks for lugging my Eureka figures up for me. Hope to see you at Partizan next Sunday!

  3. Nice to meet yourself and Katherine, glad you enjoyed the show too. See you at Partizan, all being well, it promises to be a cracker.

  4. Colin,
    Glad you and your good lady had an enjoyable weekend the show, what little I saw was most enjoyable.

  5. excellent Colin. Scotland - the last refuge of "proper" wargaming then?

  6. Excellent report, Colin. It was great to see you and Katherine, and everyone else. It is one of my favourite shows and I am looking forward to 2018's already!!

  7. Yes it was great day out...we posted some more picture on our blog ...if ww2 is your thing. That's to Falkirk for a great show.

  8. Opps correction. .. thanks to Falkirk.