Tuesday, 31 December 2019
Back in September 2018 I posted on Vintage Wargaming about the acquisition of some Rose figures from Peter Goldsbrough's collection of 20mm Napoleonics. In addition to these I had quite a large number of unpainted figures from a previous purchase, which I intended to combine in a project I thought I would document on line. The Goldsbrough figures included a lot of conversions, some of them very interesting, and which required a degree of repair and refurbishment.
That original Vintage Wargaming post can be found here.
For various reasons all the fun and excitement were soon drained out of the project and I put it aside for eight or nine months, and even thought seriously of throwing all the figures away. However, then after finishing various other things I decided to have a go at seeing it to completion. This meant a further two or three months sticking at it and grinding out about 20 battalions and 10 or 12 guns and crews. While it wasn't very exciting while it was going on it was a good feeling of achievement to get it completed. It also meant I still haven't had to face up to painting hundreds of Hinton Hunt French and British line infantry figures.
I have always liked the stylised nature of the Rose infantry, all of which are in two poses, marching and advancing.They are almost semi flat or demi-ronde, and I had always thought they would look very good en masse. I also changed my normal basing standard (20mm x 20mm for foot) to two ranks of two figures each on a 30 mm frontage with a 40 mm depth to fit the style of the figures and was very pleased with the result.
This photo would have illustrated this point better if I had stuck the figures a bit straighter on the base.
Having acquired a large number of Rose officers of various types, but all in the same pose, waving their sword in a right arm that looked just a little too long, I got quite fond of using them with Les Higgins units, to give a slightly more animated command option than the LH bloke standing on a football and pointing.
The Rose Napoleonics range was small and doesn't seem to have expanded hence the need for conversions for anyone with ambitions beyond this original list. This might be to add more detail, to get the troop type you wanted, They were first issued in 1963-4, therefore a little before the Hinton Hunt 20mm range, which took the alternative route of being as large and comprehensive as possible.
I had also come across the DBN Napoleonic Rules which operate at a grand tactical level and are really designed for 15mm figures. In the couple of games I played I found them really well thought out and clearly thoroughly play tested. Although this isn't the level I would choose to do moist of my Napoleonic wargaming I am now wondering whether the Rose armies might provide an option for DBN.
The Rose figures are a bit of a sideline and curiosity really - I'm not sure for example how they might work with my other 20mm figures, like Hinton Hunts and Alberken - so thinking of a particular role for them is a good thing and very welcome after the time and work put into them.
So in the end I think a useful project to create some unusual armies and I'm glad I stuck with it.
The British Army.
5 battalions Line Infantry
1/2 battalion Highlanders
1/2 battalion Rifles
1 squadron Life Guards
1 squadron Royal Horse Guards
2 squadrons Light Dragoons
1 squadron Hussars
3 guns (Hinton Hunt) and crews (Rose)
Line infantry - five battalions of them - two refurbished, three painted from scratch.
Half a battalion of heavily converted Highlanders from the Peter Goldsbrough collection. There is an officer to add who needs a repair to his sword arm.
Half a battalion of lightly converted Rifles, with their rather nice command element.
Royal Horse Guards
Light Dragoon command, including trumpeter conversion. No later Light Dragoon figure was listed so I don't know what the base figure for these and those below was.
Later Light Dragoons
Light Dragoon 1800 - I only have one of these,unfortunately.
Hussars - again I am not sure what the base figure is, I suspect it is the French Hussar MFR 4
The only two British cavalry figures listed were MBR 1 British Horse Guard 1800-1815 and MBR 2 British Light Dragoon 1800.
British Foot artillery - Rose gunners and Hinton Hunt guns.
I did have one Rose British gun but I can't identify it- I painted up my entire British artillery park prior to finishing all my remaining gunners and I can't positively identify the Rose piece. I do remember it was a nice clean model and casting.
Ubiquitous Wellington figure converted with a shako into a British mounted colonel.
British line infantry command bases including Miniature Figurines 20mm mounted officers as colonels. These are one piece castings.
British line infantry bases using only Rose foot command figures.
Two photos of the British Rifles command conversions, bugler and officer.
British infantry casualties, Rifles, Line Infantry, and Highlander.
British cavalry casualties
The entire Austrian Army.
Apart from the Peter Goldsbrough Collection line battalion converted from helmets to shakos, these were all painted from scratch.
There were no cavalry or artillery (the entire listed Rose Austrian range comprised three figures of fusiliers in helmets - officer, marching and advancing infantrymen). However there also seemed to be advancing and marching Austrian Grenadier figures which are well represented in this army.
I added some artillery - a spare MF 20mm crew, three Newline crews and four Newline guns. I haven't done anything about cavalry and if they are required I will borrow them from my Hinton Hunt Austrian army.
I decided to paint most of the infantry as Hungarian (sky blue trousers) rather than German (white trousers) regiments. The figures are the same, just differently painted trousers.
The whole Rose Austrian army is made up of:
1 battalion German line infantry in shakos
1 battalion German converged Grenadiers
2 battalions Hungarian line infantry in helmets
3 battalions Hungarian converged Grenadiers
1 small unit of Jagers
4 guns and crews
The two generals are one Hinton Hunt figure and one Rose Wellington figure with a paint conversion. There are some Hinton Hunt foot officers in the Grenadier units.
Austrian German Grenadier converged battalion (with the line unit in shakos behind)
Austrian Hungarian infantry battalions - 3 converged Grenadier battalions at the front with two line battalions behind.
Small unit of Jagers (converted figures)
Austrian Artillery.The Rose Austrian range only had three figures, all infantry in helmets - officer, marching and advancing figures. There were no artillery in the Peter Goldsborough collection so all the guns and three crews are Newline, which match reasonably well, along with one Minifigs 20mm crew (front right).
the two Austrian Generals. The figure on the left is a spare Hinton Hunt one; the one on the right (bicorne worn fore and aft)is a paint conversion of the ubiquitous Wellinton figure.
German infantry command - converted figures with shakos added on left, Grenadiers on right including a Hinton Hunt officer.
Hund=garian Line Infantry command.
Hungarian converged Grenadier Battalion command
Line infantry casualties - I have just realised these are all from German units and none from Hungarian ones.
The whole French army - in the blue trays - British army in red trays behind.
The whole army comprises:
3 battalions French Line Infantry
2 converged battalions French Carabiniers
5 battalions Guard Grenadiers, one painted as Dutch
1 battalion Bavarian Line Infantry
1/2 battalion Nassau Infantry (2 light companies, 1 company Grenadiers)
1 squadron Carabiniers
2 squadrons Cuirassiers
I squadron Dragoons
1 squadron Lancers
1 squadron Line Chasseurs a Cheval
3 guns and crews.
Gunners are Rose and I have given them 2 8 pdrs and 1 howitzer, all of which are Hinchliffe 20mm models.
Guard Grenadiers are of course grossly over represented, but as this is an army constructed out of what I've got and in particular from two main collections, one originally painted and the other originally unpainted figures, it hasn't been created to order.
In the end a good variety of troop types. The originally painted collection figures, which have just needed a small amount of refurbishment, are finished to a better standard than those I have painted from scratch, However, because of the stylised nature of the figures and in particular the two infantry poses, I think they look very good en masse.
Carabiniers (with Line Infantry behind)
Guard Grenadiers - as you can see a disproportionate percentage of the whole, but probably representative of how many Grenadiers re probably sold by any Napoleonic range.
Bavarian infantry - not sure what the base figures are, possibly Austrians, the drummers and standard bearers must ne French Grenadier conversions, the mounted officer is again a Wellington, this time with an Austrian helmeted head.
Nassau infantry. After taking the picture I found another base of four light infantry. I think the base figures are French Carabiniers; again there is a converted hornist. Busbies for the Grenadiers may have come from Garde Chasseur a Cheval figures.
The whole arme blanche. The horses are all authentic Rose ones but have been fixed to bases taken from Hinton Hunt horses; I think the Hinton Hunt horses were used for cavalry casualties. All swords are made from pins and wire reins were added This has greatly enhanced te base figures and they have ended up as very nice figures.
These are Line Chasseurs. They are Rose figures but there were no line chasseurs - I am not sure what the base figure was.
`Cuirassiers - whole unit.
Lancers - I need to make a repair or two (reattaching lances)
The gunners are Rose and I have used Hinchliffe 20mm artillery pieces with them. I have never knowingly had any Rose French guns but I have seen some lovely brass masters which I think were the Rose artillery piece masters.
Another paint conversion of the Wellington figure, which has a claim to be the earliest publicly available 20mm wargames figure, dating back to the late 1950s. Also present in the Guard Grenadiers stand in the second photo below, and more heavily converted in a shako on the Line Infantry command group on the left of the photo below.
The mounted officer is a more drastic conversion of the Wellington figure, with a head swap to give him a shako.
French Carabinier command - I think the officers are Guard Grenadier ones with Carabinier heads swaps. Both bases have converted hornists.
Guard Grenadier command elements
Bavarian command - I think French Guard Grenadier figures with Austrian head swaps. I suspect these heads came from the Austrians converted with shakos.
French Cavalry casualties
French Guard Grenadiers casualties
Figure converted into a Bavarian casualty