The Second Book of Wargaming by F E Perry

After the recent interest generated by LEIPZIG ON THE LAWN wargame and the BLACK HAT MINIATURES Army Packs offer in wargaming with 54mm figures, I decided to look for my copies of THE FIRST BOOK OF WARGAMING and THE SECOND BOOK OF WARGAMING by F E Perry. Despite an extensive search, I could find neither, and I have come to the conclusion that I must have lent them to someone who has not returned them.

I looked for both on eBay, and found a copy of THE SECOND BOOK OF WARGAMING on sale at a not too ridiculous price … so I bought it. It was delivered yesterday, and I managed to spend an enjoyable hour or so reading through it.

The book has six chapters entitled:

  1. Crossing a river
  2. Gas Warfare
  3. Night Fighting and Trench Warfare
  4. Support Services
  5. Seaborne Invasion
  6. The Island defences

Reading this book has convinced me that I really must try to get hold of a replacement copy of THE FIRST BOOK OF WARGAMING … but only once I have found one at a price that I can justify paying!

THE SECOND BOOK OF WARGAMING was written by F E Perry and published by Model and Allied Publications (Argus Books Limited) in 1978 (ISBN 0 85242 601 1) for the princely sum of £1.75!

Form square!

On at least three occasions during the recent LEIPZIG ON THE LAWN wargame, units formed square … and might impressive they looked as the following photographs show.

An Austrian square

A rather ragged French square … under threat of attack by enemy infantry

A rather neat Prussian square

54mm figures of real grass! Are there many wargamers who would not find this inspiring?

Leipzig on the lawn: The battle

All the participants had arrived at the venue in central London by 10.00am, and preparations for the start of the re-fight were well underway.

In the centre of the battlefield was the city of Leipzig, with two smaller towns forming the basis of the outer ring of defences.

After a quick break for coffee, the re-fight began, with the Russians pushing forward on the Allied right, …

… the Swedes and Prussians in the centre, …

… and more Prussians and the Austrians on the left.

As these forces gradually pushed forward …

… the French mounted a fighting withdrawal, …

… centred on Leipzig.

By the time lunch was over, the increasing pressure on the French was gradually beginning to have an effect.

On the Allied right a Russian cavalry charge …

… caused considerable casualties on a French cavalry brigade.

The French Cavalry Brigade eventually dissolved and the Russian Cavalry exploited the gap …

… and charged forward yet again, causing further French losses.

The depleted Russian cavalry then withdrew to recover.

Elsewhere the Swedes continued to advance, and the cautious Austrians gradually pushed the French right flank back. The Prussians continued to move forward, and having pushed the French defenders aside, some of their cavalry entered the city.

The battle ended …

… with the French in retreat, beaten but unbowed.

Readers are strongly advised to double click on the individual photographs shown above in order to see them in detail.

Leipzig on the lawn

This morning I am off to central London to take part in a re-fight of the Battle of Leipzig … the first figure-based wargame I will have been involved in since early July.

The battle has been organised by Tim Gow and others, and will feature over two thousand 54mm toy soldiers, a large lawn, and some rules inspired by H G Wells’ LITTLE WARS. Amongst those rumoured to be taking part are Conrad Kinch, Tradgardmastare, and David Crook … but I won’t definitely know until I get there.

I hope to publish a selection of photographs of the battle in due course.

Cordery’s Composite Cavalry Corps: The uniforms are identified!

Thanks to some sterling research done by Edwin King, the uniforms of the various units that currently make up CORDERY’S COMPOSITE CAVALRY CORPS have been identified as follows:

  • The ‘Red’ Hussars are Russian Life Guard Hussars
  • The ‘Green’ Hussars are French Chasseurs à Cheval of the Guard
  • The Polish Cavalry are officers of the Russian Life Guard Lancers/Uhlans

The figure that I have not yet bought from the range that is on sale at THE WORKS is of General Murat. The uniform he is wearing is a bit too flamboyant for my taste, and might require a bit of re-painting to make is usable for FUNNY LITTLE WARS.

Cordery’s Composite Cavalry Corps expands!

Thanks to a visit to the branch of THE WORKS in Woolwich, I managed to buy some further painted metal 54mm-scale Napoleonic Cavalry figures for £2.00 each. As a result CORDERY’S COMPOSITE CAVALRY CORPS now includes:

  • 8 x ‘Red’ Hussars
  • 8 x ‘Green’ Hussars
  • 7 x Polish Cavalry

All I need is a further Polish Cavalryman to be able to field three small ‘regiments’ of Light Cavalry in any forthcoming FUNNY LITTLE WARS battles.

I have tried to track down what unit each of the figures actually represents. As far as I can see, the ‘Green’ Hussars are – in fact – French Chasseurs à Cheval of the Guard. As to the others … well that research remains a work in progress, but if any of my regular blog readers can identify them, I would be very grateful.

Cordery’s Composite Cavalry Corps

Yesterday I paid a visit to a nearby branch of THE WORKS … and found a whole load of painted metal 54mm-scale Napoleonic Cavalry figures on sale for £2.00 each! Needless to say I bought a few … enough to be able to form what I am temporarily calling CORDERY’S COMPOSITE CAVALRY CORPS!

For the sum of £28.00 I bought the following figures:

7 x ‘Red’ Hussars

5 x ‘Green’ Hussars

2 x ‘Blue’ Polish Cavalry

With luck I hope to be able to add some further figures to my ‘Cavalry Corps’ in due course.

Although these cavalrymen are wearing early nineteenth century uniforms, cavalry across the world tended to wear similar dress uniforms right through until the First World War … and in the case of the Russian Civil War and the Russo-Polish War, some were even wearing nineteenth century uniforms into the early 1920s! As a result I think that I may well be able to field these figures in most FUNNY LITTLE WARS battles set in the period up to 1914.