Wednesday, 20 April 2011
As usual, others have beaten me to it with reports and photos, but I thought I'd still post the pics I took of Salute last Saturday. The general consensus seemed to be that the standard of games was up and attendance a bit down. The latter perception may have esulted from an extra feeling of space - the amount of space occupied by re-enactors was less than in previous years and generally the show felt less cramped. Another plus was the absence of the r/c tanks and daleks that have plagued recent Salutes - I have enough difficulty evading other punters and their rucksacks without having to dodge things that are racing around the aisles. First impressions were not too good. Having bought an "advance ticket" I arrived to see a queue that was about 3 times longer than the "cash on the day" queue. After 30 minutes I watched the latter queue reduce to nothing whilst those of us who had paid in advance were still snaking round to the back of the hall. Very irritating (not least because people with advance tickets who arrived after 10.30 am seemed to just walk in through the cash door, which those of us in the queue were not permitted to do).
Still, once you're in Salute is a mega-show, and I wouldn't want the points above to detract from my appreciation of the huge amount of effort that the organisers put in to the show. As stated above, the "terraining" of the hall seemed well thought-out and the bag of goodies upon entry was fuller than usual. I found most of the items I wanted to buy, and plenty others that I hadn't intended to. Purchases included: the Perry plastic 1815 Prussian infantry box; the Empress Miniatures New Zealand Wars release; the 3rd AWI scenario book from Caliver; the re-launched English edition of WSS magazine; a renewed Wargames Illustrated sub; the Olley/Grant "Wargamers Annuals"; and finally the Perry/Snook book "Go Strong into the Desert", which I've had my eye on for a while. Items desired but resisted included the Mutineer Miniatures Indian Mutiny range (beautiful figures) and the Empress Zulu War range. Given all the Perry 3-ups on display, I suspect next year's show will see my budget blown almost entirely on Perry plastics...
Anyway, here are some photos, in no particular order; as you can see, the standard was very high this year. Apologies to those games I missed.
Loughton Strike Force's siege of Budapest, 1945:
Newark Irregulars' Abyssinia 1935:
GLC Games Club's Chickamauga, 1863:
Battlefront's astonishing Grand Manner-built Gallipoli:
Crewe and Nantwich's "Alternative" Siege of Worcester, 1651:
Gentlemen's Wargames Parlour's "Battle of Ambridge" VBCW:
Lance & Longbow's/Painterman's/Darrell Hindley's Verneuil 1424 (winner of best demo):
On the left, Lundy's Lane 1814 by the Wigmore Warriors and on the right, Operation Barras, Sierra Leone by Deal Wargames Society:
Warlord Games' Antonine Wall (scenery by Touching History):
South East Essex Military Society's Norton St Phillip, 1685: