Monday 11 February 2019

Hinton Hunt and others

While rooting about in the storage boxes to check what I had in the 54mm lead pile (which is larger than I thought) I came across some momentos of how I got into the military model side of things. Along with assorted notes on uniforms, postcards and booklets I found a Hinton Hunt catalogue dated 1969 and a couple of figures that I must have painted about that time.

These show that I must have had some sort of Imagi-Nation ideas even then, as the lancer (originally Prince Poniatowski) is labelled as the Nanneghat (Nannygoat) Lancers , a non-existent Indian regiment, while the highlander is one of 'McCordle's 9th' (?). Evidently I couldn't be bothered to paint a tartan then.

These two figures came from a toy shop in Loughborough market place when I was working there as assistant manager at W.H.Smiths. They had a showcase full of unpainted models, which I see from the catalogue would have been 13/9d. Rather a hefty sum when my weekly wage was about £12. No wonder I only have two.

Most of my collection of catalogues seem to have disappeared, probably in one of our recent house moves as MrsJ insists we need to downsize, and most of the makers are no longer in the market, though some, like Replica, Glebe, and others have been absorbed by others I regret losing people like Whittlesy Miniatures, G.B.& E, and others, while there don't appear to be many newcomers to the fold.

I discovered recently that Patrick Willis, owner of Sarum Soldiers, is no longer with us, and that the range (along with the Marlborough figures that he took on) is in limbo at the moment.. Oh I wish I could go back 30 years with todays bank account, to stock up with items I can't get any more. I had a quick browse around e-bay and found very little on offer.

Where are the collections of Blenheim, Nostalgia, etc, that were among some of the first in the 'New Toy Soldier' market? Are they hoarded away, dumped on decease of owners, or passed on as playthings to grandchildren? I notice that the BMSS, in their occasional auctions, don't seem to offer much in this line, concentrating more on old Britain's and such.

On another subject entirely, I notice that lately none of my comments on other blogs seem to get through to publication. I haven't stopped reading them, just can't praise you. Apologies.