Gallipoli Campaign

Sari Bair playtesting

Shawn and I are working on a Gallipoli scenario book. My long-time interest has been the Battle of Sari Bair. Here is the table set up forplay testing. The trenches and dried river beds are from TimeCast. The figures are mostly from Baccus; the Australians with green bases are Irregular Miniatures. The Right and Left Covering Forces can be seen along the shoreline in the middle-left of the picture:

Starting Positions

The next photo shows the battle underway. It shows the New Zealand Brigade snaking up Rhododendrum Ridge towards Chunuk Bair. The lead infantry company has reached the Apex. Further down, New Zealand Mounted Rifles have occupied the Table Top and Bauchop’s Hill positions:

NZ Brigade reaches Apex

More photos and a detailed AAR will be posted soon.

HMS Talbot

HMS Talbot was an Eclipse-class armoured cruiser that provided naval gunfire support for the Suvla Bay landings in August 1915. This is a 3D printed model from The War Times Journal (see the store here):

HMS Talbot

Here she is, plying her trade on the day:

Sedd el Bahr fort

Here is a selection of photos related to the creation of the Sedd el Bahr fort used in the Cape Helles campaign. First up, a recent aerial photo of the fort before the current restoration project started:


The line of circular gun pits can be seen.

sedd el bahr fort plan

A plan of the fort, though it isn’t entirely accurate.

seddulbahir fort photo before damage

A pre-war photo of the fort.

A view of my model. The base is 3” x 3”. Plastic card has been used to create the walls and gun pits. The damaged building is from the Oddzial Osmy range.

Another view, this time from the west.

The outer walls and ruined building have been painted.

The finished article, alongside the‘town’ sector.

Not your usual HQ

Headquarters stands play an important role in Great War Spearhead. Normally, HQ stands are land-based. For the landings at Suvla Bay, General Stopford (General Officer Commanding IX Corps) had his HQ on HMS Jonquil throughout the first day. HMS Jonquil is the model on the left in this photo:

HMS Jonquil and Triad

The other ship on the right is HMS Triad, which was used by the General Hamilton.

HMS Jonquil was a Flower-Class corvette. I sourced her from Mick Yarrow Miniatures, which has quite a range of WW1 1:1200 ships. Mick had the only example of a Flower-Class corvette that I could find. Unfortunately, it was in a bit of state when I received it. The hull and decks were heavily pitted; the bridge was mis-cast; the funnels had numerous pits and irregularities; and the ventilators were broken or mis-cast. Here is the original, with some early repairs.

I stripped everything back, cutting off the funnels, bridge, etc. The final version in the first photo shows the repaired funnels sitting atop the new upper deck. Evergreen plastic was used to create the upper deck and new bridge. Ventilators are still needed; work is ongoing with these visually important elements.

All of the other models from Mick have been well-cast and will see service soon.

X-lighter painted up

This is the new Heroics and Ros x-lighter, also known as the ‘Black Beetle’. It was an armoured landing craft and was used to land troops at Suvla Bay in August 1915. It’s a beautiful model, designed for 6mm figures. The crew come with the kit, which is a combination of resin hull and metal fittings:

x-lighter overhead
x-lighter bow
x-lighter aft

HMS Manica

HMS Manica was a tramp steamer converted to a kite balloon carrier. More than 100 years on, another conversion is underway. Paint job next...

HMS Manica under development

In the background is HMS Triad, which served as a floating HQ.

The truck in the foreground is from Heroics and Ros. It will form part of the Flying Column for the Ctesiphon scenario, so not relevant to Gallipoli ;-)

First play test for Sari Bair

Yesterday, Jason and I spent the whole afternoon working our way through the first play test of the Sair Bair scenario. We covered the August 6/7 night attack. In this photo, the Ottoman trench lines can be seen snaking their way up Sari Bair ridge on the right. The Australian lines have company stands with bright green flock. We modelled the outcome of the Lone Pine attack, with two Australian stands in the Ottoman trenches.

Bottom and middle left are the right and left covering and attack forces. A Short seaplane can be seen, along with a destroyer torpedo boat, monitor and light cruiser off North Beach.

Aerial view

Click on the photo to open the full-size image.

Here is a closer view of the New Zealand Mounted Rifles assaulting Table Top defensive position, with covering fire from HMS Colne and land-based howitzers:

Attacking Table Top

Click on the photo to open the full-size image.

A company of Maori engineers can be seen middle-right, opening the way up Sailek Dere.

On the far left flank, British troops can be seen bypassing Walden Point, which is being assaulting by elements of theCanterbury Mounted Rifles regiment:

Bypassing Walden Point

Click on the photo to open the full-size image.

All of the figures are from Baccus. I started laying TimeCast latex river sections to model the gorges and ravines. It worked well but I will need some more, painted up in the same style as the trenches, without water ;-)

It was a fascinating day’s work. I really enjoyed the opportunity to model how the night attack started out. The process is already revealing why there were problems trying to crest Sari Bair by 4.30 am on 7 August! Lots more to do and test though.

Tumbling Dice RN ships

Here are two photos of various early war battleships and a light cruiser (HMS Bacchante) that supported the Gallipoli landings:

RN on the way
HMS Bacchante

Plus a photo of the first two waves heading for the shore:

Gurkhas advancing

Here are some Baccus Anzac troops painted up as Gurkhas. Three companies are advancing across the hilly terrain above Anzac Cove in a bid to capture Hill Q.

Gurkhas advancing

Click on the photo to see the full-size image

Mountain guns

The newly released Baccus 6mm Indian mountain gun:

Indian mountain gun

And their Ottoman counterparts:

Ottoman mountain gun

Robert Dunlop 2014 to date