NEW RELEASES FROM KING & COUNTRY!
Welcome to this month’s rather modest set of releases as we continue to navigate our way through the rules, regulations and restrictions governing travel into and out of China both for ourselves and our productions.
As mentioned oft times before it ain’t easy but at least we are still able to somehow produce at least a portion of our normal releases every month as we patiently await the return to some kind of normality and opportunity to meet face-to-face with our sculpting team and our factory partners north of the border.
So, without further… let’s get on with it…
BEING RELEASED IN OCTOBER
1. "Wonderful, Wonderful Copenhagen… Again!"
As mentioned in September’s ‘DISPATCHES’ I have loved Denmark’s capital, Copenhagen for many, many years. It’s an amazing city and one of the most enjoyable to spend any time in.
It’s also a great walking and cycling city and the perfect way to discover most of its many delights.
Among the most colourful are, of course, the Royal Danish Life Guards who parade and mount guard duty throughout the year in front of the Royal Palace right in the centre of Copenhagen.
Every morning the ‘New Guard’ leave their barracks next to Rosenborg Castle in Copenhagen to march through the city streets to take over from the ‘Old Guard’ at nearby Amalienborg Palace, the official residence of the Danish monarch, Queen MargretheⅡ.
Often accompanying the ‘New Guard’ is the Fife & Drum Corps of the Royal Guard Company which comprises 8 x Drummers and 8 x Fifers and leads us to…
MRDG005 "Marching Drummer"
A single marching Royal Danish Life Guard Drummer beating time for his other comrades on parade.
2. "FOOT DRAGOONS ON GUARD"
Here are the three latest additions to our French Napoleonic ‘Dragons a Pied’ (Foot Dragoons) series resplendent in their green tunics with the red facings and wearing the traditional brass helmet topped with the long, horse-hair crests.
NA504 "Standing Foot Dragoon"
NA505 "Standing-At-Ease Foot Dragoon"
NA506 "Marching Foot Dragoon Drummer"
As was the military tradition during the Napoleonic Wars all drummers and buglers in most French Regiments had their uniform colours reversed in order that they could be seen more easily amidst the smoke and confusion of battle.
Our Foot Dragoon Drummer wears a bold, red tunic together with green facings, on his head the regular brass helmet but with a pure white horse hair crest in order to create extra visibility on the battle field.
3. "A MOST UNFORTUNATE ROYAL COUPLE"
TR009 "The Archduke Franz-Ferdinand & His Wife Sophie"
On Sunday, 28 June 1914 the heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary, the Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife, the Archduchess Sophie were on a visit to Sarajevo, the capital of the Austro-Hungarian providence of Bosnia Herzegovina. While there a young Bosnian extremist, Gavrilo Princip, shot and killed the Royal couple as they drove through the city.
The assassinations, along with a European arms race, hyper-nationalism, the military ambitions of Imperial Germany and a toxic system of political alliances all contributed to the outbreak of the First World War just a few short weeks after Franz Ferdinand’s violent death.
King & Country’s two newest and alas ill-fated royal couple shows the Arch Duke and his wife in a lighter, happier moment before the tragic events of 28 June 1914.
4. "THE NAVY’S HERE!"
Three more U.S. Navy figures to join the crew of King & Country’s latest range of USN ‘Bluejackets’.
USN029 "Saluting U.S. Navy Officer"
This officer is on ‘deck duty’ or perhaps in charge of the ‘Shore Patrol’ or leading a naval ‘landing party’.
He is in his everyday normal working uniform of double breasted, navy blue jacket and trousers, officers cap with white cap cover, white shirt, black tie and highly polished shoes.
As officer-of-the-day he is also wearing the standard webbing waist belt and pistol holster carrying the Colt 1911 automatic pistol which served as the standard side arm for America’s armed forces for almost 75 years!
USN031 "U.S. Navy Bluejacket Presenting Arms"
This smartly-turned out sailor is ‘presenting arms’ with the M1903 ‘Springfield Rifle’. First introduced in 1903, this rifle was widely used by all U.S. Forces and saw extensive service in WW1 and beyond.
Our sailor wears the standard web cartridge belt with 10 ammunition pouches attached as well as his water canteen and bayonet scabbard.
Befitting a Naval Landing Party he also has his navy bellbottom pants neatly tucked into long canvas gaiters.
USN032 "U.S. Navy Pistoleer"
This particular ‘Bluejacket’ is practicing his aim with his personal Colt 1911 Automatic Pistol.
Around his waist is his web cartridge belt with just 5 rifle ammunition pouches and a single .45 calibre ammunition pouch containing two additional clips of pistol rounds.
This sailor also wears the canvas leg gaiters.
5. "DEADLY YOUNG OPPONENTS"
Staying on dry land for a moment K&C continues to explore the bitter and bloody fighting taking place all over Normandy in the summer of 1944.
SIX additional and extremely useful young soldiers from the notorious 12th SS ‘Hitlerjugend’ Division that fought and died in and among the ‘bocage’ of the Normandy countryside in that fateful summer.
WS362 "HJSS Advancing w/Rifle"
Cautiously moving forward this youthful soldier had only just completed his infantry training before the Allies invaded France on 6 June 1944.
Now, his training has become his reality!
WS363 "Running For Cover"
As allied artillery shells explode all around him this young soldier clutches his steel helmet as he sprints from one position to the next hoping to find a safe place to take cover.
WS364 "HJSS Running w/Rifle"
Another young infantryman dashes forward, rifle in hand and ready for action.
WS365 "HJSS Squad Leader"
Calmly signaling his men to go forward this soldier is one of the veteran NCOs who has already seen battle on the Eastern Front and for him Normandy is nothing new and considerably less dangerous than fighting the Soviets.
WS367 "HJSS Kneeling firing MP40"
Here the MP40 is in the capable hands of another young NCO (non commissioned officer) who kneels to take aim at the advancing Allied infantry.
WS368 "HJSS Lying Prone w/Rifle"
This young soldier, after leaving school just 6 months before prepares for his first battle as the enemy gets nearer…
6. "PROTECTING AND SERVING THE MONARCH"
Just two weeks ago, as I wrote this part of ‘DISPATCHES’, the whole world had the unique opportunity to see on television the state funeral of Her Late Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.
Over many hours viewers around the globe could see the pomp, splendor and spectacle of the ceremonies involved in Britain’s official farewell to a much loved and respected Queen.
Central to these ceremonies was the participation of many thousands of military personnel from all branches of the United Kingdom’s Armed Forces as well as representatives from several key Commonwealth Defence Forces.
Among all those fine soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines on parade were a large number of men and some women belonging to the ‘Household Division’ which traditionally has provided those senior military units tasked with ceremonial and personal protection duties associated with the ruling monarch who, in Britain’s case, is also the country’s head of state.
For centuries now the Household Division has consisted of two regiments of Cavalry (The Life Guards and The Blues & Royals) and five Regiments of Foot Guards (Grenadier, Coldstream, Scots, Irish and Welsh).
All of them are renowned for their unique proficiency and the legendary smartness with which they carry out their ceremonial duties. As modern soldiers they are also second-to-none for drill, discipline and reliability as their record on and off the battlefield testifies to.
King & Country’s latest release in our ‘CEREMONIAL’ series spotlights one very important and colourful part of all the units of the Household Division… their Military Musicians!
An expanded version of our 21-figure Coldstream Guards Regimental Band bringing the band up to a strength of 43 musicians.
Another expanded version incuding two complete 21-figure Coldstream Guards Regimental Bands with additional musicians bringing it up to 51 soldiers.
CE078 "The Coldstream Guards Regimental Band"
This King & Country version of The Coldstream Guards Band includes 21 x individual figures led by a superb Drum Major and 20 X musicians comprising:
2 x Side Drummers
2 x Flautists
2 x Clarinetists
2 x Saxophonists
2 x French Horn Players
2 x Cornet Players
2 x Trombonists
2 x Medium Bass Tuba Players
2 x Large Bass Tuba Players
as well as
1 x Bass Drummer and a solo Cymbalist
All 21 figures come packaged in their own specially designed box.
Regimental Bands have varied in size over the years… The Coldstream Guards Regimental Band increased steadily to reach its greatest strength, 75 in 1970.
Since that high point it has been reduced to usually between 45-50 musicians today, depending on the availability of trained military applicants.
As with all British armed forces bands every musician is also fully trained as a Regimental Medic and Stretcher Bearer in times of conflict and on active service.
For those collectors wishing to expand their Coldstream Guards Regimental Band and bring it up to full strength these solo figures are also available:
CE079 "CG Side Drummer"
CE080 "CG Flautist"
CE081 "CG Clarinetist"
CE082 "CG Saxaphonist"
CE083 "CG French Horn Player"
CE084 "CG Cornet Player"
CE085 "CG Trombonist"
CE086 "CG Medium Bass Tuba Player"
CE087 "CG Large Bass Tuba Player"
The Drum Major, Bass Drummer and Cymbalist figures are only available as part of the complete 21 x figure Regimental Band Set.
7. "BEING RETIRED"
Here are this month’s ‘RETIRALS’… grab em while you can.
LAH198 "Hitler... Deep in thought"
For the Third Reich in the spring of 1945 desperation and defeat were staring them straight in the face... In the West, the Americans, British and Canadians were advancing steadily...In the East the Russians were almost within artillery distance of Berlin itself. Hitler had plenty to think about ... including his own demise...
LOJ044 "In The Carpenter's Shop"
One more variation of a very popular set of Joseph the Carpenter with the youthful Jesus in his carpentry workshop.
LW066 "Mussolini's Rescue Set"
This great-looking four-man set portrays a forlorn-looking Mussolini just a few minutes after his rescue walking with his hands dug deep into the pockets of his long, black overcoat... On his head a black ‘Fedora’ hat pulled well down a far cry from the proud and strutting, uniformed leader of just a few years before.
By the dictator’s side is the tall, confident figure of Hauptsturmfuhrer Otto Skorzeny, Himmler’s chosen man to accompany the Luftwaffe Fallschirmjagers on this dangerous mission.
Skorzeny, although a Waffen SS officer, is wearing the tropical uniform of a Paratroop Officer. The reason for this is that it was felt that German Luftwaffe airmen would be more ‘acceptable’ to Mussolini’s captors than SS men...!
Flanking both men are TWO actual Fallschirmjagers... One officer and one enlisted man... It’s interesting to note that while the officer carries the well-known Schmeisser MP40 machine pistol, his junior carries the revolutionary FG-42 Assault Rifle. This weapon, built in small numbers, was very advanced for its time but too costly and utilized too many precious metals to be manufactured in great quantities.
Both of our Fallschirmjagers are wearing the ‘Tropical’ versions of their camouflage smocks and the light Khaki, loose-fitting trousers.
This set also comes in its own Labeled box.
NA338 "Royal Artillery Cannon"
A single field piece to accompany the gunners.
This hatless guardsman reached back into his ammunition pouch for another cartridge.
NA362 "Thrusting w/ Bayonet"
Perhaps out of ammunition this guardsmen is resorting to ‘cold steel’ to attack the enemy.
NA364 "Standing Firing (hatless)"
In any extended firing line it helps to have a little variety ... and here is one ... minus his ‘bearskin’ of course.
NA393 "Wounded Guardsman Shoulder Arms"
This Grenadier has suffered a headwound but still advances forward.
NA399 "The 'Old Guard' At Rest"
A standing Grenadier converses with his sitting, pipe-smoking comrade...
It’s fair to say that looking at these 2 x casually-posed Grenadiers on ‘Guard Duty’ the enemy must be far-away and certainly nowhere in the close vicinity.
NA405 "Mounted Aide-de-Camp"
The Emperor employed dozens of these dashing young officers to convey his instructions and orders all over the battlefield and beyond.
They would also, on occasion, act as his personal ‘eyes and ears’ reporting on how well officers and regiments carried out the instructions and orders carried to them by these self-same ADC’s
USMC025 "The Stretcher Party"
Four battle-weary ‘Leathernecks’ carry a wounded buddy back to safety and down to the beach where a landing craft will ferry him out to one of the hospital ships lying offshore.
Five great character-filled figures combine into one special set that is a worthy and necessary addition to our very popular USMC series.
And that my friends and fellow collectors is that… a bit less than usual this month and I wish there was more but… c’est la vie… c’est la guerre!
Best wishes and... Happy Collecting!
Andy C. Neilson
Co-founder & Creative Director
King & Country