Welcome to my blog, the story of my continuing journey into the World of Zombie Wargames.

Monday, 17 October 2016

Shildon 2016

Bren-gun Carrier on a railway flat-bed.
Well, I did make it to "Stand To", the show at Shildon Railway Museum, following yet another magical mystery tour (thanks for nothing Sat Nav) through the wild lands of County Durham.
A quick look around the games, traders and museum quickly followed, just to get my bearings of what was going on and where was followed by a more determined wander to decide where to spend my limited funds.
I was with four others (friend, #Son, + grandchild, the Son-in-law and our mutual southern friend-recently moved North).
The hall on our arrival
The place was never going to be full of visitors (despite there be NO entry fee!) but we'd arrived early and there was a steady stream of visitors throughout our time there.
The one-man-show that is Andrew Wiley, (who seems now to be a fixture at most NE shows) was there with his excellent Wild West game (Fittingly using Dead Mans Hand rules iirc) ; the town is almost 100% made from card using "Finger and Toe" models.
I quickly came away form the table having witnessed the poor sole in the centre of the table taking his first shot and scoring a '1' on a d20 - jamming his gun!

Early doors at Dave Docherty's Sudan game
I met up briefly with fellow blogger Roy Williamson, ( of the blog Never mind thejankers) and would chat with him  later too.
Dave Docherty (top bloke), of the blog One man and his Brushes put on the Sudan game (better piccies and write-up on Roy's blog btw). The game looked great and was very much to my taste; I would say "Old School" but that term seems to mean different things to different folks these days.
The game followed a fairly well-worn path of a desert column moving across the table to relieve a beleaguered garrison at the other end.
I did love everything about this game , a period that I have quite a large collection of figures for (though not a single one painted!)

Some time later the column has moved up the table
Looking back at the game later on, the desert column had moved some way up the (very large) table, but were still well short of their objective.
Alas I didn't stay around until the end, but there were people around the table all day long, rolling dice to fight off the various Ansar attacks.
A second desert game was put on by Redcar Iron Beards (iirc) using 15mm figures (as far as I could tell), once more with great looking figures.
Superb brushwork

For the fantasy fans, two very enthusiastic chaps from Catterick Gamers put on a fantasy display using Warhammer 40k figures (I think).
The enthusiasm of these guys for their game was unbounded as was their painting - both figures and scenery. Though not my cup of tea, it was difficult not to be drawn in by their love of what they do.
Their table, though busy with figures was not overly so, a feature I've noticed (and disliked) in a lot of this type of fantasy game.

Super looking terrain.
 Their great detailed terrain matched well with their figures etc. and had obviously had some TLC when built.
More of their great terrain
And yet more.
t was a bit disappointing to only have four games on show, just another tow or so would have made a big difference imo.
I was surprised not to see more of a showing from some of the local groups, Redcar and Catterick or hardly local!
The traders were, as always, very welcoming and I could easily have spent well over my limited budget.
I chatted with most of the traders as they weren't exactly inundated with punters, bu did have a steady trickle .

In conclusion, I did thoroughly enjoy the show (getting out is always a boon), it was easy going, the people in attendance were welcoming and the company I was with were good crack.

Whilst there are a lot of shows within an hour or so of where I live I do hope this one continues and garners support in the coming years.


  1. Looks like a grand show. Better yet to Meet Dave Doc and Roy. Meeting them would have been the highlight of my day. (Do not tell them that though). The games look good but despite the good brushwork 40k mostly makes me yawn these days. (I must be getting old).

    But overall a TOP day out!

    1. It was a great (if small) show, I really didn't get to chat to Dave Doc. s he was far too busy with his game bu it was nice to put a face to the name. Roy and I had a very interesting chat late on (when I eventually found him, just before leaving).
      I too have little to no interest in 40k but did admire the work the dedication of the two chaps from Catterick put in.

  2. Slow shows means you get more time to chat with traders, demonstrators and other bloggers. Good day out in my book!

    1. You're absolutely correct dGG, it must have been one of the few shows where I've been able to do that without feeling awkward.

  3. That looks like a great show Joe, great pictures too. Glad you had a good time, once you got there.

    1. Thanks Michael, it was a very good show and would only take a few more punters and games to make it great.
      I always do enjoy taking the chance to get out if there's a hobby purpose,

  4. Ah, another blog another show! It's good to hear you're enjoying yourself and I have to admit I was - unjustifiably - surprised to hear you enjoyed the 40k display. In all fairness, it did look stunning.

    Is this a new show or why it looks as if nobody knew it was being hosted?

    1. Hello Mathyoo,

      The show has been running for 3 years now. The major problem is that the organisers don't advertise enough (probably due to the expenses - £400 for a magazine advert, I believe - and not utilising the Internet effectively to advertise the show for free via forums etc).

      First year really was a good first-time event, and things looked promising for the future. The second show was a failure, if everyone is being honest. That being the case, a lot of people didn't return this year. Another problem is that the most local clubs/groups don't seem to turn up for the event. I don't know why. But, people were conspicuous with their absence.

      This show has the potential to be a very good small to medium sized show. Unfortunately, as things are being done at the moment, it will probably die before it gets a chance to take off.

    2. Hi Mattyoo, yes, another show and another blog post filler!
      What Roy says above is true, although I wasn't at the first one so can't really compare.

  5. Nice to meet you Joe, and its now very handy for me to be able to put faces to names, for yourself and family/friends.

    One of those chaps running the 40K game (Mark - the one in glasses and trouser braces) I've known for 20 years, as we were both members of several clubs in the Richmond area. So he can remember me as a young teenager, not having a clue about how to play wargames. Not that I had a clue, most of the time, while playing on Sunday!

    Those rules Dave used with his game certainly were fun, and if those are the old school type of rules previously used, I hope they make a comeback soon. They were far easier to play, than most of the new '100+ pages' rules books you get nowadays.

    1. Thanks Roy, I loved chatting about the hobby in general as I rarely get the chance amongst the Fantasy boys that I know.
      The rules were a development of Guilders rules I think that in turn were used for Pony Wars (for which I have a large collection in 15mm)
      I'm not that surprised you know the Catterick chaps, nd Mark was very easy to warm to.

  6. Replies
    1. Thanks Fran, it was nice to have a chance to chat about a show!

  7. Looks like great show! Thank for photos!

    1. Thanks Michal, maybe not the biggest or best show but certainly one with a lot of potential.
      I do wonder about other game shows across Europe and occasionally get to read about some of them with other bloggers.
      I find reading about people's view on shows very interesting and assume, rightly on wrongly, that others will too!

  8. Replies
    1. ven for a small show, it was everything I hoped it would be.

  9. It's always good to get out - and seeing fellow bloggers must be a bonus! Like you, I think it's a pity that there weren't a few more games, but still...

    1. Yes, you're right, whereas it used to be the norm for me to get to see most, if not all the local shows, it's been quite a rarity over the last few years.
      I'm now looking to see if I can fit another ne in before Xmas too.

  10. Nice report Joe and it must have been fun to been a visitor.

    1. Thanks Ptr., it was my second time there and it was still as interesting as ever.
      Small, but great show imo.