Welcome to Shooting Leave, my Late Victorian/Colonial blog.
I have been mulling it over for quite a while as to whether it would be worth the effort to produce another blog as I already have three! (Time for a Cheep plug!, there's La Journee, which covers the first half of the 15thC and in the main focuses on the Hundred Years War or French War as it was known to contemporaries, then there's Gewalthaufen focusing on the 1500-1600's and Just Add Water which is my general High Quality Painting Service blog. Feel free to check them out!).
So is there a real need for me to produce another blog? Well, yes. Just Add Water started out years ago mainly focusing on the Dark Ages in the times when trips to Nottingham WAB all-weekenders were still raging and when it was still possible to pop down to Gripping Beast HQ for the Cold Steel, Hot Lead and Havok! one day campaign events. As they say those were the days. Since then, although the 15thC Late Medieval war gaming has always been an absolute passion of mine I've found that my tastes have broadened and naturally other periods of history have come into focus for the table top. La journee and Gewalthaufen are my two Late Medieval blogs as noted above.
One growing passion is for all things Late Victorian and the wars that the British Empire found or forced itself into. The Sudan, The Anglo Zulu War, The British in India and African are but to name a few. These will all be covered by and by.
So why the name Shooting Leave? Well, there are in fact a couple of reasons, i/ it's quite original (I hope!) and ii/ Shooting Leave was a kind of codename for mainly though not exclusively aristocratic officers in the British army volunteered for 'special service' (by army I mean artillery, infantry, cavalry and all other 'special' corp). This usually took the form of relinquishing all regard to self preservation, travelling the world incognito often atn one's won expense surveying and exploring on behalf of the Crown. Some of these names have become household words to the student of Victorian History and indeed wargamers alike, Alexander Burnes, James Abbot, Valentine Baker and the redoubtable Fred Burnaby. There are many others, some lost to history, some who lost their lives.
Although the blog will mainly concentrate on the campaigns and battles of the British army and their brave (and not to be underestimated!!!!) foes I hope that it will contain just enough of the more bizarre staging and setting of what went on behind the scenes- not in an academic suffocating way, but rather in an pleasing manner. I make no apology for not being an academic student of the 'period' but hope that I can provide some entertainment at least.
So, any Victorian Warfare blog would not be complete without a few pics and a Kipling quote so here's a few words and pics pics to keep you happy!
'For Allah created the English mad - the maddest of all mankind'
- Rudyard Kipling (1856-1936) in Kitcheners School
Studio Miniatures, Sikh Wars British
Foundry Miniatures, Afghan Pathans