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Slimbridge and L’art de la Guerre, the Zimmerwald Conference of the South West League?

Artist's impression of the Tudor Arms, Canal and Grill, site of the historic conference in 2015.

Artist’s impression of the Tudor Arms, Canal Centre and Grill, site of the historic conference in 2015.

One hundred years ago an ill kempt and argumentative group of academics and union organisers met in Switzerland to coordinate their opposition to the needless slaughter of the First World War. People scoffed at their proposals and grand designs, or worse still passed the meeting off as a mere footnote to history. Within a few short years, these ‘cranks’ and ‘misfits’ were the leaders of countries and armies……..

This weekend the Slimbridge chapter of South West  Rural Wargames collective met with the vanguard of the Radyr Loyalist Cadre plus Nigel from the Darkest corner of the Forest of Dean. When we drove into the car park, next to the bowling alley, we knew we were making history. Neither myself, nor Jon ‘ I haven’t had enough time’ Gallacher, were sure just what we could expect. Sure we had loved DBM, but it had been torn apart by fun-suckers looking for exercises in Geometry. Similarly, L’art de la Guerre like DBM has been translated from a foreign language. The Lenin of our movement, now in its twentieth year, is of course Mr. K McGlynn. There he was perched at the entrance to the skittle alley, surrounded my his harem of West Country beauties ( suspiciously one of whom was FRENCH!). What followed was a much needed day of gaming that got me full of plans and ideas for the future. The rules were a dream to play and the armies a joy to behold.

Kevin's Trojans were a blaze of colour but found Nigel's "Armoured" Saxon spear a tough nut....😡

Kevin’s Trojans were a blaze of colour but found Nigel’s “Armoured” Saxon spear a tough nut….😡

imageMarks Early Imperials brought the dreaded Armoured swordsmen to the table. Now that’s what a proper army looks like! Although Keith managed to batter his way through with his heavy horse……

Every school boy should recognise this one....

Every school boy should recognise this one….

image image imageAndy and Jimmy the Sub both brought Assyrians. Immaculate armies both, let’s hope those Isis museum curators don’t find them!😧😦😟

Titanic struggles between Assyrian proto-tanks raged all afternoon.

Titanic struggles between Assyrian proto-tanks raged all afternoon.

image image image image imageKeith met my Andalusians somewhere in the Bronze Age, and our faithful spearman held out long enough for our mercenary Christian Knights to slice through his flank command.

The faithful destroy El Presidente's hopes of West Country domination!

The faithful destroy El Presidente’s hopes of West Country domination!

Keith had brought a Bronze Age Iberian collection with large numbers of medium swords and spearmen.

Shock cavalry eyed up their Christian Knight adversaries....

Shock cavalry eyed up their Christian Knight adversaries….

Wooden crossbows may work against wood pigeons but not Toledo steel!

image

As my Knights rolled up the left , even my Jinetes returned….

A very rare victory over the Grand Wurzell ensued!

A very rare victory over the Grand Wurzell ensued!

As you no doubt will have gathered, the rules are excellent. I heartily recommend them. Sorry that the Birmingham Contingent couldn’t make it down but I’m sure this system will resurrect the   South West Ancients circuit to what it was and that is a very welcome development! Keith has put his evil Sidekick, Mr. A Unwin on organising the next one. Thanks to all and hope to see you all very soon!

Hope to see you at the next training day!?

Hope to see you at the next training day!?

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About the Author

Posted by

The wild ramblings of an infamous wit and wargames guru. One of nature's true gentlemen who devotes his time to the care of his two sons, i.e. watching episodes of Peppa Pig together, and recreating great moments of military history using toy soldiers. Currently a leading light in The Collectivo Despertaferres wargames and duelling association who meet regularly at Firestorm Games ( formerly Ali Baba's Carpet Warehouse). Find me also on Facebook "Despertaferres"!

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