Friday 30 December 2016

British Auxiliary Legion and other stuff

Well Christmas is over and done with for another year. This year we opted to get away from all of the hassle of the day and booked a luxury break at the Sofitel resort in Fiji. We flew there on Christmas Eve and were in the resort pool in 32 degree temperatures (water temperature in the mid-20's) just three and a half hours after leaving Auckland, with full butler service. It didn't have the cheeriest of starts when, after only a few minutes in the pool, the call went out for a doctor for a man who collapsed and wasn't breathing. But the crisis passed. Happy hour and a pleasant dinner overlooking the water followed, then another dip in the pool to round out the day.

Christmas morning dawned clear and warm, despite a forecast for rain. After breakfast on the beachfront and a walk along the shore, it was into the pool for the rest of the day. Lunch, mocktails and happy hour drifted by easily. The threatened rain stayed at bay. Dinner, followed by a night time swim, closed out a perfect day, although we did get a little too much sun.

Monday and Tuesday also defied the weather forecast and apart from a very brief rain shower one evening, the days were hot and sunny. The daily routine was pretty standard by now with breakfast by the beach, the days spent by and in the pool, happy hour and dinner, all without a care in the world.

Anyway we are home now, back to the more temperate climate of Auckland (indeed as I cooked the BBQ last night wearing a sweartshirt in the face of a cold southwesterly wind I wondered if it was summer at all). I still have another four days of leave to catch up with some painting and a few other tasks.

Yesterday I finished the bases on two units of British Auxiliary Infantry and a unit of British marines for the First Carlist War that I had painted before we went away. My BAL contingent is limited to just two battalions from the Irish Brigade - the 9th  Irish Grenadiers and the 10th Munster Light Infantry, the marines, plus the artillery sets posted a week or so ago.

The Munster Light Infantry (above and below)

The Irish Grenadiers (above and below)

The Marines

 The BAL staff set (below) is painted but not yet based.

I have one a unit of lancers to complete to round out my BAL force. The bulk of the BAL for games is being collected by my friend Keith at his BYDAND blog ( 

To close out this post are three sets from the Retreat from Moscow range. 

The dismounted cavalry skirmishing set.

The mounted cavalry skirmishing set

The light cavalry charging set.


  1. Mark! Your Christmas holiday venue looks spectacular! Buried in snow, I am indeed envious.

    Your British troops looks smashing. The British uniform looks very similar to Foundry's 1st Afghan War Brits in Belltop shako. Is this the same uniform?

    1. Yes Jonathan, we have been to this resort a couple of times before, but this time we took the adults only (16 years + option) and it was bliss! The uniform seem to be the same cut, but the shako plates and finer details are unique to the BAL. the bell shako seemed to be quite the fashion item of the time.

  2. What a fantastic Christmas getaway Mark. Our family went to the middle of the Whirinaki forest for a couple of days! Have a great New Years'.

    1. Yes it was nice to get away, it has been a hectic year. Happy New year to you too!

  3. Wonderful figures (love the atmospheric dismounted cavalry skirmishing set), and wonderful Fiji! Enjoy!

    1. Thank you Phil. I have just finished the BAL cavalry...I shall try to post some images tomorrow.