Thursday, 21 March 2013

Borodino 200th anniversary

Back in November 2012 the League of Gentlemen Wargamers of which I'm a member put on a refight of the Battle of Borodino to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the battle but due to the problems I've been having with my blog I couldn't post any pics but thought I needed to post at least a few of such a fantastic game.  The battle was fought over four 12x6 tables although a fifth table would have been useful but we ran out of tables and terrain tiles.
This table was the far left of the Russian flank and was seperated from the main table by the Utitsa woods which was full of Russian skirmishers and any troops trying to move to the main action had a d3 delay plus the Poles and French had to clearout any Russians to move through.
Dale Smith commanded the Poles and Peter Nicholson the Russians.
This table saw serious fighting all weekend with Utitsa village and the hill changing hand many times but the Russians still hung onto the village at the end of the day and still had a brigade of Grenadiers and masses of Opolchenie still unused at end of play.
The Poles about to launch their first assault.
Waiting to get stuck in.
The main table was split into two halves to allow us to move about and reach the troops in the centre.
Even though the tables were 12' deep the French 100 gun grand battery and cavalry Corps of both sides were still off table.
The fleches changed hands many times over the weekend but all except for some defences around Semonovskya were still in Russian hands and infact the Russians were considering counter attacking from this position but decided to transfer troops to support the fighting around the Raevsky redoubt.
My gun battery did sterling service all weekend and helped in the destruction of two French ally divisions.
This table saw death and destruction on a massive scale to both sides.
Around 14 brigade, 6 division, 2 Corps, Marshal Ney and Kutusov the Russian commander all met their end defending this table.
By the end of the weekend both sides were exhausted and there were very few Russian troops still left on the table but the Guard infantry Corps and two cavalry Corps were still off table stopping the French from exploiting their success.
The French eventually managed to take Borodino off the Russian Guard Jaeger regiment that was defending it but were unable to advance due to the large amount of Russian cavalry that was blocking any further movement.  In fact the French were so concerned about this flank that the transferred large numbers of reserves to this flank that might have proved more useful elsewhere.
 Although turning history on it's head and recording a Russian victory everyone who took part in this fantastic battle felt they were winners, it's not often you get to fight battles with over 4,000 figures per side.


  1. Thanks Ray, I feel very lucky to be involved with such a great bunch of guys to put on games like this but when you read the report on our Back of Beyond game at the weekend you'll wonder if it's the same crowd,
    bunch of double dealing, back stabbing reprobates 8-)
    Great fun all round.

  2. Splendid looking stuff! A shame about the hideous plastic markers though...

  3. Wow! Awesome looking you game! I do agree with David in dropping the markers next time for something more natural.


  4. I agree about the markers they do detract from the nicely painted figures, personally I use small 15mm cardboard markers which are printed in the colour of each force and blend in well.

  5. You should have Hugh Wilson make you up some markers - he is a very innovative fellow from what I have seen and remember!