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Friday, December 2, 2022

Wake up -Reveille is back!

Hooray! If anything suggests things are getting back to  to normal in our society, it is the welcome return of Bristol’s friendliest Wargames show. It’s been three years since the last Reveille show at Lincombe Barn in Downend and like most local gamers with fond memories of this intimate, friendly show I was delighted to hear that it was back. 

Reveille, undoubtably Bristol’s best loved wargames show, is presented by the Lincombe Barn Wargames Society who meet each Sunday for regular gaming sessions in this marvellous early 18th century building for which the Society is named.

   It’s a lovely venue with several large rooms perfectly suitable for hosting the show. 

I bought two delightful “old school” Ents from Mike McGuiness of Broadsword Miniatures. Mike has been gaming probably longer than I have!  Mike’s figures have a distinctive style resonent of another age and dripping with character. There is a link to his website below, it is well worth a visit.  

Broadsword Miniatures

Picture- Geoff Solomon-Sims of Oakbound Studios, delighted to be back at Reveille!

“Lorien meets Hook” Geoff’s unfinished Frondleith terrain, a Leprechaun village. Geoff is an extremely talented sculptor with an extraordinary take on fantasy gaming, his game The Woods is packed with fantastic illustrations from his imaginary world and he has sculpted characterful figures of all his creations. I recently backed Geoff's kickstarter for his Leprechauns and owls and I am very pleased with them. I intend to use them for my Silver Bayonet Campaign

Oakbound Studios

The Show was well organised and run with quite a few willing and friendly society members on hand to help the proceedings along. There were fourteen trade stands and ten participation and demo games, all of which were well attended. Oh… and there were bacon and sausage butties!

 Picture- Carol Flint of LBWS a 100 Year War fan and a BIG fan of Sharpe Practice!


Lincombe Barn Wargaming Society

On another stand was seasoned gamer, author, and historian, Martin Hackett. I was delighted to meet Martin as back in the day, 1990 in fact, I had used Martin’s book Fantasy Wargaming to run a two year long campaign with a dozen friends on a self-created world where many different races clashed in a frenzy of bloodletting and magic. Fond memories indeed, how lovely then, after all this time, to meet the author!

Martin is as amiable as his photo suggests. A keen historian and member of the Battlefields Trust, Martin has written several books one of which “the Wargamers Guide to Dark Age Britain” I had to purchase. This book covers the Early Medieval period, from the collapse of the Roman Empire to the 11th century and tours the battle fields, discussing the history,  the weapons and the tactics in considerable detail and provides not only advice on wargaming the period but also Martin’s rule system “as Told in the Great Hall”

  He walks the battlefields that he writes about and illustrates his books with his own photos.

  Martins’s book was published by

One of the demo/participation games that really stood out was the 54 mm Old West Shoot out hosted by Skirmish Games. 

This amazing was table packed with period buildings representing every Old Western Town institution you would hope to see -Stage Office, Bank, Railway Halt, Saloon, General Store, Taverna and lots of adobe dwellings.

It looked like every other film from my childhood. And it was populated accordingly with gunslingers, bandits, lawmen and various citizens. 

“There’s a stage leaving at noon stranger…and you better be on it!”

It was all bit too much for some citizens… after all it is Sunday afternoon-siesta time!

Dogs of War hosted a game of To the Strongest! which had Sassanids and Romans in 10mm slogging it out

I am not sure if they were simultaneously playing a quick game of Seven-card stud or whether the cards were part of the game

Steve Jones presented his new WarreGame 17thC ruleset with a participation game showcasing a Swedish/Imperial battle of the 1630’s.

  Punters were invited to roll the special WarreDice and try their hand at the rules.

View from the Imperial lines-mainly old foundry TYW figures

The Imperial cavalry wings were eventually defeated while their steadfast foot held the centre at the close of play. 

   Steve is planning a mega-game next year at Salute - the Death-ride of Gustavus Adolfus involving Piccolomini’s Horse vs the Smalanders in 1:1 scale … yes some 900 cavalry figures! 

  Imperial Cuirassiers (Renegade) engaged with Swedish horse (Bicorne)

As a result, he’s commissioned some new and dynamic Cuirassiers- especially sculpted by Paul Hicks. 

  You can follow Steve’s progress on his Facebook page 

Enquiries about the rules to Caliver books who are the sole stockists currently 


Enquiries for the new Cuirassiers, email Steve direct at     

There was a WW1 Wings of Glory dogfight presented by Wings of Glory Aerodrome, unfortunately I got no pics of this game! One of the problems with co-hosting a game is you just do not get to see enough of the show or have enough time to talk to people… and I am a social butterfly!

   The map for our Wars of the Roses hypothetical battle of “Ye Olde Down End” set on the site of Lincombe barn 270 years before it existed. (It was built circa 1750)

I have hosted a few Billhooks participation games now and I have found that giving the game a local setting really engages the players.

   Quite a few people read the fluff and thought this was an actual battle!

There was a cheerful buzz throughout the show all day…

    …which did seem to be louder at the Billhooks table!

 One of the Generals was Vince Noir!

There was a lively and constant interest in the Billhooks Deluxe Rules…I could have sold a dozen copies

The games produced the usual mix of chaos, calamity and triumph! Everyone who played had a great time, there was a constant stream of laughter

Self-confessed Billhooks Addict Mark Taylor (right) did a splendid job of running the games.

The Eternally Angry Duke of Somerset frightens his Retinue into action

Tactics are an important part of Billhooks. First- identify your objective then…

   Defend the pub!

Reveille! Quite as brilliant as my memory made it… and only a short walk from my house! 


  1. It really is a great show and definitely my favourite. I always manage to pick up some good bargains or rare figures. Great write up and thanks for the mention...

  2. Thanks Mike, it was great to meet you, all be it briefly! I am just reading "Searching the Loamy Earth" and enjoying it very much ! You write well and its a great read.