Home from Colours 2009
Posted by Martin on September 15, 2009
As I suspected, despite the title above, I was too tired to complete this post on Sunday evening. My feet are still aching from going up and down all the stairs in the venue! Something that isn’t aided by the fact that we did a four-hour family dog walk and blackberry picking outing on Saturday.
My overall impression of Colours this year is that attendance was slightly down but that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing – either for visitors or traders. The games and trade stands were easier to get at and more comfortable to stay at making for a more pleasant experience and, according to some traders I spoke to, encouraging more actual purchasing.
As usual, my companion around the show was Peter F. and the latest news from Calpe Towers is that the first moulds for Saxon artillery pieces have been made and I’ve now got a couple of these highly distinctive items in my possession. I’m too stretched to photograph them for you now but that delight will follow in due course. Peter’s also working on the Saxon grenadiers to complement the already released musketeers and then artillery crew will follow. The other photo-worthy item is Peter’s entry in the painting competition that came a creditable second in its class – I’ll have a nice picture of that for you soon too.
The demo games were of variable standard and there wasn’t much new or exciting to report from the trade stands yet, despite this lack of excitement, I still really enjoyed the day and picked up a couple of bits and pieces that I’d been after for a while or that had been recommended. I got some 100mm wire pikes for cutting down as landwehr cavalry lances; on Peter Royle’s recommendation via Peter F., I got yet another type of white paint to try (more of that on another occasion); and I acquired some very neat castings of wooden barrels and buckets from Antenociti’s Workshop – these are destined to grace some artillery and command bases.
I also learnt a lesson about striking while the iron is hot (or rather, failing to do so). I saw a second-hand copy of the Blandford Press book Uniforms of the Retreat from Moscow on one of the booksellers’ stands but rather than snaffle it there and then I opted to see what else I might find elsewhere and return later. Of course, the inevitable happened and another eagle-eyed shopper had purchased the book by the time I returned. Never mind, I was forced to console myself with a copy of Uniforms of Waterloo from the same publisher instead. While it’s true that these old Blandfords contain quite a few errors and modern research has superdeded them they are still useful and many of the colour plates are lovely little works of art.
So that brings to a close this year’s visits to wargaming shows for me and, as Autumn begins, I can turn attention to painting again on the cooler evenings. Plus I’ve got a weekend of sculpting and mould making lessons to look forward to at Calpe Towers in a few weeks time.