And what an army it is! When I was researching The Chartists it became clear that the forces of law and order took a less than Dixon of Dock Green approach to community policing. In fact if workers were on a demonstration or on strike they were as likely to be shot down, trampled and sabred or beaten to death with truncheons as they were to lose your job. With that in mind I began to construct what became The Army of The Privilege. Why did you call it that some of you are wondering. Simple, they represent the laissez-faire system of the early to middle Victorian era.
The army consists of ten bases of figures for a total of 24 points.
2 x Spears (Infantry)
2 x Shooters (Infantry)
2 x Warband (Police)
2 x Knights (Yeomanry)
1 x Magician (Wizard of The Privilege)
1 x Behemoth General (Dark Satanic Mill Owner)
1 x Stronghold (Dark Satanic Mill)
The Spears and Shooters are from Irregular Miniatures' 15mm 'Indian Mutiny/EarlyColonials' range. They represent the general militia, and sometimes regular, troops used to quell civil unrest.
The Warbands are Peelers. I can't remember the manufacturer but they started life as a Royal Navy boarding party. I added tails to their coats from greenstuff. The only figure with anything approaching the tall top hat Peelers wore is the figure with the pistol. I did think about building up the sailors' caps but then, after a couple of failed attempts, I decided their hats were reduced in height by fair wear and tear. Or bricks.
The Knights are from two seperate Irreguular Miniatures ranges. The troopers are from the 15mm 'Indian Mutiny/EarlyColonials'. While the officers are from IM's 15mm Napoleonic British Light Dragoons. I like the trooper figures, nice and chunky. The officer figures I do not like at all. They are noticeably smaller than the troopers and are just plain weedy figures. I had to place them on 'plinths' when it came to basing to get them level with the other ranks. And why are they Knights? Well, as history shows, the Yeomanry cavalry of this period would always charge when the opportunity presented itself.
The Magician is from Gripping Beast and is a bishop figure from their 28mm Dark Ages figure ranges. I altered his crook to resemble a £ sign. In his job as a Wizard of the Privilege he charms workers into believing that everything that happens to them is their own fault. The Magician is accompanied by a couple of spare officer figures as bodyguards.
The Behemoth General is from this chap and is really first class. Well cast with few mold lines it came with no base but is so well balanced it stood up with no difficulty. So, what does this Behemoth General represent? A tyrannical mill owner who used up his workers as if they were merely nuts and bolts. Crushing their hopes and aspirations underfoot. That says Behemoth to me. The general is accompanied by a couple of bodyguard figures.
As with all my HotT armies each element has a label to show its name and role.
Finally The Stronghold. It could be nothing else but a Dark Satanic Mill. The stronghold is entirely scratch-built. I used balsa for the walls and roof; cocktail sticks for the drain-pipes. The chimney stack is a piece of 4-square plastic tubing. I roughened up the sides and then glued paper brick sections onto it. The smoke is painted cotton wool fixed to an extended paper clip; the long section of the clip is simply slipped down the chimney.
I inscribed the individual stones/bricks onto the stronghold's walls before assembly. I used a 6" steel rule and a cocktail stick; it is fairly monotonous work but not too time consuming and some good music helps. I think it is worth the effort. I did the same to get a tiled or slate effect on the roof.
The boiler house was produced seperately but using the same method. The windows are paper ones from a picture of a real mill I found on the interweb. The coal pile next to the boiler house is a mix of bird gravel, filler and black paint.
The Spears & The Shooters
The Behemoth General
The Stronghold - Dark Satanic Mill
The Army of The Privilege
All the best!