Monday, October 9, 2017

What I did on my holidays by Conrad Kinch, aged 37 1/2






An artists impression of John Treadaway enroute to tell me that my copy is late. 
(Squat Trike from the pen of Paul Bonner)


My recent trip to London was a roaring success. Four nights of uninterrupted sleep was magical. Meeting John Treadaway was great fun. Lovely fella - he rather put me in mind of one of the old GW
squat bikers with his beard, ponytail, leather jacket and giant machine. It was definitely a few days of meeting old friends and making new ones. 

The Austrians advance under the command of the doughty Brian Carrick
(picture cheerfully thieved from Bob Cordery)


The game on Saturday was magnificent. A spread of 2,000 figures on a playing area sixty feet by sixty feet. I commanded the Swedish contingent (mainly played by Prussians in this instance) and finished the game in the suburbs of Leipzig having done for the Imperial Guard, which will always remain something of a career highlight. The company was excellent. Made some new friends and caught up with some old ones.

I was not in a position to take photographs, but you'll find some good pictures at the fine blogs below. 





St. Paul's went a little over board on the incense while I was there. 

Service at Westminister Abbey was wonderful. St. Paul's was magnificent, I thought it was expensive at first, but wildly underestimated how vast the place is. Worth every penny. Had longish natter with one of the Canons named Mike.  I paid my respects at Wellington's tomb. It always does to remember the local boy.

Gordon's Tomb
(image tea leafed from the Church Monument Society)

I am a great admirer of Charles Gordon and I was strangely moved when I saw his sarcophagus.  I had not realised he was quite so small.  There I think is the difference between having read a thing and knowing it. 

My own, slightly smaller, Gordon. 

My daughter was named Gordon for a day while she was in hospital.  We had settled on a name and when we saw her, we realised that it didn't suit her exactly and it took us a day while we thought of a new one.  I was very tempted to add Gordon as a middle name when I went to register her birth, but forebore at the last moment.  She has his mercurial and exploring temperament. 

I will take her to see her (almost) namesakes tomb someday.

I miscalculated and hadn't realised that the Pre-Raphaelite exhibition at the National Gallery hadn't begun yet, which was a shame. The Horse Guards museum was a joy, particularly as you get to watch the lads at stable duty. I ended up having a long old chat with some of the Ministry of Defence police who were on duty outside. I certainly noticed the greater presence of armed police and talked to several of them around the city, I suppose because it is so unusual from an Irish perspective. They were unfailingly friendly. The thing that really struck me was the number of them with beards - the Met clearly having different regulations on this matter. .


An artist's impression of the National Army Museum

Of the National Army museum, the less said the better. It was the only sour note in an otherwise excellent trip.

I should have listened Tim. I should have listened.  And what only makes it worse is that I missed the Wallace Collection because of it. 

I survived Charing Cross Road and Martins Lane with only minor damage to my wallet. Not many books this trip, but quite a few prints - mostly fashion for Mrs. Kinch and Alice and Pooh Bear for the Kinchlets. There is more framing in my future. 

I'm still wondering if anyone does a suitable train in 20mm

I was very happy to get a single large engraving (done as a special by the Illustrated London News) of "a reconaissance in force" in 1882, which the Egyptians record as the Battle of Kafr el Dawr. It's an engagement that has intrigued me for a while, so I was glad to get it. There was a definite thrill of discovery when I recognised the geography and the regimental numbers in the otherwise anonymous piece.

After that it was home again, home again, jiggity jig. Mrs. Kinch and the Kinchlets seemed none the worse my absence and quite pleased to see me actually. 

21 comments:

  1. Reviresco do suitable train bits but you have to get them from the States. Our customs "handling charge" makes this a no go really in the U.K. but may not be a problem for you. I did a second set using the old Airfix kits from Dapol including the tank engine (pug) and simple conversions of the rolling stock. You can find these kits on their website under shop - modelling accessories - self assembly OO kits

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    1. Thank you very much. The Reviresco option might be pricier than I can hack at present. I'll have a look at the Pug kit. Their buildings are very nice.

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  2. As the Norwegians say (very loosely translated), "North, south, east, and west. But being at home is the best." Happy your trip went swimmingly, Conrad ol' boy. Terribly envious of the outdoor garden game and the visits to Saint Paul's and Westminster. What has happened to The Army War Museum? I thought it wasn't bad (forgetting the spring rolls in the canteen, of which the less said the better) back in late 1988, but that was (surprisingly and frighteningly) a long time ago now in another life and another time. "Gordon" looks lovely by the way. What a wonderful smile.

    Best Regards,

    Stokes

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    1. Most of the artifacts appear to have been done away with and everything has been organised by theme.

      https://www.tripadvisor.ie/ShowUserReviews-g186338-d211904-r528348877-National_Army_Museum-London_England.html

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  3. Glad you had a good trip. Despite living on the edge of London I've never made it to St Paul's or NAM. Less tempted by NAM having read your review though!

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    1. It was a great trip. I'd stick to the IWM and the Guards if I were you.

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  4. Sounds like you had a great time , is the new National Army Museum that bad ?

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    1. I really enjoyed it. As for NAM - it probably didn't help that I went in with low expectations and was still disappointed.

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  5. Replies
    1. Looks like I'll be having go at a Dapol kit.

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  6. Well, you know the old saying about absence and hearts.

    A most excellent vacation by the sounds. As for trains....might be slightly overscale for 1/72nd plastic but his 25's are small and it is designed to 'run' on HO scale track.
    Reviresco armed train

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  7. ps my train is of course a conversion of a cheap toy train from a toy shop......

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    1. I think Dapol will fill the gap rather more economically. I'll check the local model shop.

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  8. Sadly I have to agree with you about the National Army Museum; it does have a lovely cafe, but that seems to use more space than the exhibits. The Imperial War Museum is indeed much better.
    Is it OK to ask where Leipzig on the Lawn actually took place? Or is it a highly secret location?

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    1. It is a bit grim isn't it? I'll stick to the IWM.

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  9. Shame about the NAM - it confirms what I've heard from other sources. But it sounds that, apart from that you had a splendid time.

    Have you tried Apsley House? That might be more your bag.

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    1. Aspey House is great. I haven't been there in years. Must pencil that in for the next trip.

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  10. Hello Mr Kinch,

    Done for the Old Guard? Living proof then that history is written (rewritten)by the victorious...:-)

    It was a pleasure crossing swords with old chap!

    All the best

    DC aka the Corsican Ogre....

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    1. They weren't getting over that bridge with cavalry in pursuit.

      It was a pleasure indeed. Hopefully see you soon!

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  11. I also meant to mention the three Terry Wise articles on building a Boer War armoured train in Airfix magazine which could provide both some inspiration and practical tips. You've probably seen them before but if not I've got them posted on Vintage Wargaming at http://vintagewargaming.blogspot.co.uk/2010/09/terry-wise-building-boer-war-armoured.html?m=1

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