Sunday 25 April 2021


Today is ANZAC Day in New Zealand (and Australia for that matter), our Remembrance Day. In recognition of the day today’s regular Sunday wargame took place in Palestine where a small force of  British and New Zealand troops were assigned to assist T.E Lawrence (of Arabia) and his band to destroy a section of the German-Turkish railway. 

Defending the line was a Turkish force, supported  by a howitzer and two MMGs. A reinforcing German contingent was expected by rail.

Now I need to say up front that none of these figures and models are mine.

The train bringing the German reinforcements “chugged” onto the table. 

The British, supported by  a howitzer, an armoured car and a couple of MMGs arrived at the far end of the table

The New Zealand Mounted Rifles, supported by several light vehicles carrying LMGs, arrived shortly after. 

Meanwhile Lawrence’s Arab contingent, with a truck loaded with explosives, made for the railway.

The Turks were quick to deploy

They were soon engaged by the New Zealanders...

...whose light vehicles opened fire with their machine guns

As the first shots were exchanged the Germans disembarked at the Ali Baba railway station

Meanwhile Lawrence directed his explosives expert to prepare the charges

The Kiwi machine gunners blazed away from their vehicles...

...and “Johnny Turk” said “stuff this for a game of soldiers” and retreated back through the advancing Germans.

The arrival of the Germans had an immediate effect, immobilsing one of the New Zealand vehicles and destroyed this Model T Ford on its first outing on the table!

Then with a mighty “KERTHWHUMP” Lawrence’s man blew the tracks...

...and Lawrence, with pistol in hand, surveyed the damage.

Then together the Kiwis and Lawrence’s lads pressed the Germans (while Johnny Turk sought shelter behind the railway embankment). The New Zealanders were helped on no small part by the appallingly bad dice rolls of the German MMGs

For the briefest moment the British tried to steal the glory, but the Kiwis stepped forward an drove off  the last of the Germans

Larry then rode forward and thanked the  “Colonials” for their assistance... a Kiwi vehicle trundled past him on its way to take out the last Axis resistance.

Here it all came to an end and was all a good bit of fun.


  1. Splendid figures Mark (even if none of these are yours! 😊) and wonderful vehicles as well, cars and train...Such a fantastic tribute!

    1. Thank you Phil. Yes the owner did a fantastic job with those figures and vehicles.

  2. Mark, what a wonderful way to commemorate the day! Looks like great fun. Whose toys?

    1. Yes it was fun. All the toys owned by one of our group...the collection is probably getting on for ten years old now and we have used them half a dozen times...a bit of a sad commentary really with so little use of such a grand collection.

  3. Looks like a great game Mark and Ricks collection looks wonderful in your pictures. The actual reporting seems to have come from Stuff (NZ online news media for our foreign readers) or the's very Kiwi centric...didn't the British do ANYTHING except march on and try to claim credit at the end??

    1. Cheeky colonials I must say. The Punjabi artillery and MMG sections made a good showing of it, turning the Turkish flank and having them abandon the desert fort.
      Also Lt Reginald armoured car was a scourge of Johnny Turk!

    2. Well the Indian (Punjabi) troops managed to do a bit of damage to the Turks as Nick mentions below but the infantry had to trudge along way to get to the front. Hey, I am just being a good Kiwi (albeit at naturalised one) and complaining about how the British always put the colonials in the way of harm instead of have been here enough Keith now to know the story!

    3. Yes indeed Mark - if one didn't know any better, one would think it was only NZ and Australian troops who were sent to Gallipoli - AND that it was all a plot by upper class, moronic British officers to deliberately have the "Colonials" wiped out.. (although what the logic of that would be escapes me!)....I doubt 90% of the citizens of either country even know there were British troops there, let alone the French!

    4. Yes and one of those British was my Great Uncle George Strachan, a gunner in the Royal Garrison Artillery, 4th (Highland) Mountain Bde, who was killed and is buried at Gallipoli in June 1916.

  4. Very fitting for an Anzac day game, and a lovely collection. I was named in honour of TE Lawrence and remember wondering as a child if there was a family connection, but it turns out my parents just enjoyed the movie. It's a long movie and I have also wondered if it may have played a role in my conception, although I should add I don't think (hope?) that would have been my mother's style.