Saturday, 18 July 2020

Beating Retreat - Pipes and Drums of the Seaforth Highlanders of Canada


For the longest time, I've wanted a full pipe band (in miniature, anyway!).  I never quite got around to it.  It's always been easy enough to find pipers and snare drummers from a variety of eras, including Napoleonic, Colonial, and others, but where my search fell apart has been finding the tenor and bass drummers.  So while I came back to the idea several times, I never got around to it.

As my Operation Husky project progressed, I kept seeing the Perry Miniatures piper and tried to figure a way to incorporate this model into my plans.



And then I found this clip:


That clip shows the Regimental Pipes and Drums of the Seaforth Highlanders of Canada beating retreat in Agira, Sicily on 28th of July, 1943.  This was the first time in the Second World War that this ceremony had been done in enemy territory!  

051239AgiraCaptured
Above photo was taken from https://www.seaforthhighlanders.ca/pipes-and-drums-news/sicily-2013?rq=agira

Anyway, as I mentioned above, the challenge in recreating the P&D in miniature is getting tenor and bass drummers (also a drum major, but I can skip that for now!).

First up, here are the drummers.  I took a couple of the bodies from the Perry Desert Rats box, and some arms with open hands.  I added some heads wearing glengarries from the Perry's plastic colonial infantry box.  The drums are from the Victrix plastic highlanders set, and drumsticks were made by trimming down pickaxes.  I made the kilts from greenstuff.





The bass drummer was made pretty much the same way as the tenor drummers.  The bass drum is made from cardboard, built around a spare wheel.







The snare drummers were a little simpler, they are a mix of the WW2 Desert Rats with the drummer arms and drums from the Perry plastic NWF infantry box.



I asked the Perrys if they could sell me half a dozen pipers (so I could save having to purchase 144 tam-o-shanters).  They went one better, and just sent me the pipers!  I modified them, adding greenstuff kilts and headswaps for glengarries.



And here is the band, ready for paint!




As these men are from the Seaforths, they are in MacKenzie tartan.

Here's the bass drummer




If you look at the bass drummer in the video clip, you can see the bass drummer has a bugle, so I duplicated it!  The other drummers also likely have bugles, but I didn't see any in the video, so that was my excuse for only giving one to the bass drummer!


Here are the tenor drummers:



The drum slings are also greenstuff.












Here is the full drum corps





And here are the pipers.  I was a bit nervous about some of the glengarry heads being bearded, but then I found out about Ed Essen, pipe major of the Seaforths.  He quite happily grew his beard out for the duration of the war!









Finally, here is the full P&D beating retreat in my miniature town square!








2 comments:

  1. Well, this just made my day! Such an outstanding job you've done on these!

    ReplyDelete