Monday 6 December 2021

Shed Wars is 10 years old today !

Good Morning All

It is the Shed Wars 10th Birthday - I cannot believe that I started this blog exactly a decade ago.

Looking back over the years writing this blog has provided me with an enormous senses of satisfaction but perhaps more importantly it is a wonderful reminder of what a great hobby we are fortunate to be part of.

I'd also like to thank those who attend the Shed and take part in the games . Without their support this blog would mean nothing.

Given that this is a big birthday I was hoping to share some BIG news but sadly I am going to have to delay this until the New Year. Yes there is some BIG news ...all very positive.

In the meantime and as before I'll share a quick summary of the numbers, lookback on what has happened in the last 12 months and try to gaze into the crystal ball for next years plans (without revealing the BIG news).


The table below illustrates the counts over the last 10 years, and they steadily climb. The Last 12 months has seen  some 277,000 views, or approximately 23,000 per month. With no other data to compare this against I have no idea if this is good or poor. I can report that a typical new post generates around 1-1.5 thousand hits in the first couple of weeks so this suggests that my 'regular readership' is about this number. Of which only a third are following. 



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I think when we look back on 2021 the first half of the year was very much characterised by the continuation of Lockdown and the uncertainty that this pandemic continues to cause society, As I mentioned last year I am in the very fortunate position of having a degree of financial security and so I decided at the end of last year that I would take early retirement. With this extra time on my hands I have been able to devote more time to the hobby.

So when I began to review the year it became apparent that this was  a very productive year for painting and in no particular order here is a quick summary of what has been added. 


Most recently I focused on building up my ECW Collection with more pikes, shotte and artillery. These were all rebased during the year and I can now proudly boast almost 1000 28mm figures in this collection.

 Right at the beginning of the year I added to my WOTR collection (and I am painting more at present) - I can now field almost 1400 plus figures and this probably represents the largest army period I now have in the shed.

As a side project in January (thanks to a fortuitous bid on ebay) I painted up a Plains War project. This included over 100+ mounted braves, c60 foot indians and 4 troops of US cavalry (each 12 mounted/dismounted strong) 

In September I added a further two Cavalry troops and command stands. 

One of my simple objectives this year was to rebase all my Zulus and whilst I was at it I added to the Impi. Over 1000 Zulus can now take to this field ! 

The final side project was the purchase and painting of a small Dwarf Army (c250 figures strong) - we have a plan to fight the Battle of the Five Armies in the New Year and nobody in the group had any Dwarves.

Some odds and ends also hit the painting table including 60 Victrix Vikings

And a few 3d printed tanks for my VBCW Collection.


The terrain building has been relatively quiet this year with no major projects however I did manage to finish my walled Desert City (aka Khartoum)

and to complement the battle mats made last year I made up several hills.

Despite Lockdown we have been successful in playing games most Monday nights but rather alarmingly I did not document a lot of these but we fought games across most of the genres held in the shed.....these included a couple of games set in the Plains Wars using Black Powder

We refought the battle of El Teb in colonial Sudan


But by far the biggest event of this year was our successful attempt to refight all the Battles of the Wars of the Roses. These were all individually documented on the blog and are summarised on this page link HERE

We started this ambition to refight all the major engagements of the WOTR back in 2020 before Lockdown and by October 2021 we had fought the first four battles. When restrictions lifted in May this year we threw ourselves into completing this plan. By October Bosworth (our finale) had been fought. I have just finished writing a couple of articles for Wargames Illustrated on this adventure and these will be published in the New Year.

In the meantime a couple of simple pictures from these games...

The biggest and the best game - Towton

The first game - First St Albans

The last Game - Bosworth


Much will inevitably depend on the big news I am not going to reveal but what I can say is that next year's wargames focus will be very much on adding to what I already have rather than starting any new periods. Like my Zulu's I plan to bring my Dervish army up to a full 1000 strength (figures are already here) and then I'll be looking to add to my 300 strong Afghan forces. With this accomplished I should be able to host some serious Colonial games.

Other plans include a full rebase and additions to my Crusader and Saracen Armies. I am going to also attempt to develop some siege games in this period.

Finally as a group we are thinking of kicking off a campaign to refight the biggest battles of the English Civil War. This is very much in the early stages of development but you can watch progress here.

And that brings you to the end of this 10th Birthday special. Thank you for following this blog and thank you for your comments. Please stay safe. Wishing you all a very happy Christmas

Eric the Shed 

Saturday 27 November 2021

Adding to my ECW collection

Over the past couple of weeks I have been focusing on some additions to my English Civil War army. A rather fortuitous purchase of a Warlord Bowx set ands some extra sprues off ebay have now been built and painted. I addition I purchased a further six cannon of various sizes at Salute.

The new cannons can be seen below - based predominantly on 5 x 10cm bases. 

Three new pike units - each unit is 10cm x 10cm and is formed of 15/16 figures

Two of these pike units are on 5 x 10cm bases which allows the creation of a large unit 15x10cm or could be used as small pike blocks (5 x 10cm) 

Six more cavalry...I used the other six as command figures

Another 8 command stands - including 2 packs of renegade commands purchased at Salute from Colonel Bills

and a further 19 bases of Shotte (all four figures on a 5 x 5 bases)

Time to show off the whole collection of 960 figures...

Not quite a 1000 but I am getting there...

More soon

Monday 15 November 2021

Battle of Gettysburg by Imber Court Wargames


Occasionally I visit and participate in games at the Imber Court Wargames Club (near Hampton Court). 

A couple of weeks ago they hosted an all day event featuring the Battle of Gettysburg. The following report was written by one of the players.

The club is very friendly, has a massive conference room to play in at Imber Court (a social and sports club) at a very competitive rate of hire. The club typically convenes every Sunday afternoon. 

They are always on the lookout for new players and to support this club I said I could post about it on the blog. If you live in or around South West London and are looking for wargaming on a social level then this group might be just for you. Their interests are wide ranging and cover most periods. They also have a group's collection of stunning terrain stored on site. 

For more information please contact John the club's treasurer at

Who knows maybe I'll meet you there one day?

The Battle of Gettysburg (written by John, photos courtesy of Imber Court Wargaming)

Last Sunday 7th November eight members of the Imber Court games club recreated the 2nd day of the Battle of Gettysburg with over 1600 15mm figures. The terrain covered the area surrounding Gettysburg itself through to Round Top and was based on the excellent map found in the original Fire and Fury game.

The forces were based on the order of battle in Fire and Fury but as we were playing with the Black Powder supplement  Glory Hallelujah the Brigades were amended slightly to provide large, average and small sized units.

We adjusted troop quality to be set at Crack, Veteran and Green, again based on F&F with additional rules created specifically for the scenario. These rules simplified some of the supplements additional rules regarding charging, passage of lines and morale in the face of the enemy.

1.    The table is set. The blue rivers are actually dry creeks. The figures were from the collection of three members. We could have fielded more as numerous members have figures for this conflict.


1.      The Union deployment at 13.00 on 30th June 1863 with the bloody angle on Cemetery ridge and with the reserves on the Baltimore Pike. The large Union artillery reserve can be seen in the field V Corps rush towards Round Tops. The Union III Corps are forward of the main line around the Wheatfield. They put up a good fight but were soon overwhelmed by Longstreet’s powerful Corp.

1.      The Confederates assaulted both the Round Tops but were repulsed in their frontal attack on Little Round Top by Barnes and Crawford. Hard fighting here saw Hood almost succeed in taking the hills that would have opened the Union rear area to enfilade fire.


Johnson crossed Rock Creek and attempted to force his way into the Union rear but despite breaking 4 defending brigades the Union retained Culp’s Hill. The Confederates had more success attacking from Gettysburg and towards the Union line from the Sunken Road. Had they got their artillery onto Cemetery Hill the game may have ended differently.


I do hope that was of interest - sadly family commitments meant  I could not participate in this game but it looked like jolly good fun

more soon...

Wednesday 10 November 2021

Some more work in progress

Morning All

Following on from last months activities I thought I would share what has been painted, played and built in the past couple of weeks.

First up are a band of rather nasty looking Vikings. I was given a pack of these Victrix lovelies last Christmas and only got round to assembling and painting them. They do look rather good and as I continue to add to my dark age forces I think Victrix might be the go to source..

Up next is something completely different. Over the last few months I have been reading up about 3d printed stuff so it was time to bite the bullet and see what this stuff actuall looked like. I needed to augment my VBCW tank force so I purchased aVickers light tank, and a Matilda mk2 from a company called the Tank Factory (Link). These two vehicles cost me the princely sum of £17 total. 

Half the price of what a plastic kit might cost

Vickers Light Tank

Matilda Mk2

These have just been given a non descript matt green paint job and black tracks. By means of comparison here they are next to a metal and resin model

From left to right - 3d plastic print, metal, resin. To be honest for the money saved all my vehicles forward going will be 3d printed stuff.

More soon

Saturday 6 November 2021

Quick update on October Activities

 As we head into November I realised that there were a number of wargaming activities we managed to achieve in October and yet did not post about them so rather than several short posts I thought a longer summary might be appropriate. 

Of course the big event during October was the completion of our Wars of the Roses campaign to fight all the battles in this historic period. This is now complete and a complete history of all these games now has its own dedicated page on the blog HERE. This has been a successful series , so much so I have been asked to put together a couple of articles for Wargames Illustrated. Watch this space...

So what else has happened...

Quite a lot of figure painting including over 150 Zulus to bring my total to the magic 1000. More details can be found HERE

On top of all those Zulus I have rebased all me English Civil War and added around 200 figures to the ranks. Previously I had six pike blocks I now have 13. The blocks themselves are based on 10x10cm mdf coasters sourced off ebay.

Six of the finished units shown below including home made flags. The bases make our games of Pike and Shotte go so much quicker.

Close up of the push of pike...

I also based all the infantry onto 5 x 5cm mdf bases (warbases) - with four figures a base.

It only seemed right to then host a game in the shed - sadly no report but a few pictures of the action.

Fought across a rather densely packed terrain filled table this three aside game was fought out on a cold monday night

A furious affair with a finish that ended in a win for Mark F, Tony and Alastair.

In addition to our Bosworth and this Pike and Shotte game I introduced a few new players to my predator game...

This is a homebrew set of rules that sees several humans attempt to traverse a jungle and

avoid being killed by traps, beasties and of course...

The Predator - in our game we had five players taking on two predators.

The humans won the game with just one man making the edge of the board. 

Finally I have been building some hills to go with my caulk battlemats constructed earlier in the year. These have yet to see any action but I am pleased with the result...

They start off with hot foam cut polystyrene stuck onto a hardboard base

This is then covered in filler and left to dry.

I then liberally coat the hill in pva and cover in sand and brown emulsion paint.

Once dry the hill is then covered in static grass using the same blend as the grass used on my mats. They are not perfect but At least I now have some hills to use on my table

These are not so high as to be impractical - they stand around 5cm tall

That's it for now folks.

Take care