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Posted on Jun 6, 2005 in Front Page Features, Stuff We Like

Guns and Drums – 2005

Armchair General


A large display of Gulf War equipment was on display, including a shop dummy posing as a surrendering Iraqi soldier and an impressive array of modern weapons, plus a couple of Land Rovers.

In other areas, historic firearms were available for handling, and inside an impressive display of toy soldiers could be found. Unfortunately, I don’t think they were for sale, just made available for viewing by their proud owners.


Young and old were in attendance, from war veterans attending to honour fallen comrades to children buying sweets.

Hidden amongst the various stalls and displays I found one dedicated to the various branches of the Royal Artillery, and spent an enjoyable few minutes with a Veteran discussing the various types of equipment in use by the modern British Army.

This tiny capsule is actually an Air Raid Warden’s shelter dating from 1940, the year that Hitler blitzed London and the south of England as a prelude to the invasion of England.

Meanwhile, at the main gates, British soldiers from the Napoleonic era form up as French stragglers watch them from afar. The men gave us a sterling display of marching and musket drill, even firing off a few volleys for our entertainment.

As the men prepare to defend themselves from Cavalry attack, a single Skirmisher peels off to recreate the battle of Waterloo against the sneaky French snipers.

With the battle over, it’s time for a rest and something to eat.

Around the corner and hidden within the woods, re-enactors dressed as American Civil War soldiers also rested around their own campfire, their weapons ready for instant action. These men are from the 55th Virginia Regiment, but unfortunately I was a little late to see their display…oops.

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