NEW RELEASES FROM KING & COUNTRY!
Welcome to this particular ‘DISPATCHES’ which is a slight departure from the norm… This month we’re actually ‘retiring’ more items than we are ‘releasing’.
A couple of reasons for this… the first is, of course, the problems and delays, caused by the pandemic which has meant sculpting and production continues to be much, much slower than before when myself, and our team were able to personally go into China to meet our sculptors and visit factories and conduct on-the-spot inspections.
That has not been possible for almost 18 months!
Secondly, somehow we have still managed to bring out new product and going forward put many exciting projects into development that we (and you) will see over the coming months. And that means as these come to fruition and completion they will make their way down to Hong Kong and into our own warehouse here.
As anyone who has visited the former British territory knows, HK is a very crowded space and land is at a premium.
So, even though we have our own 10,000 square foot storage and shipping facility it can get pretty crowded and congested.
That being said, we have to ‘make space’… hence certain items have to move over and move out to enable us to bring in the newer items we’ve been working on these past 18 months. And, believe me, there are whole host of figures and fighting vehicles currently ‘in the works’ and ‘in development’ that are demanding space.
And that’s the story so far… Meanwhile here’s what’s coming this month…
BEING RELEASED THIS SEPTEMBER…
1. "Hit The Beach!"
In a 1964 interview former President and Supreme Allied Commander of the Normandy invasion, Dwight D. Eisenhower spoke about one of the most important war-winning weapons of the Second World War… the humble ‘Higgins Boat’ and the man who designed it.
“Andrew Higgins is the man who won the war for us. He designed and built those Landing Craft that could put troops onto an open beach anywhere, anytime. Without these LCVPs (Landing Craft Vehicle Personnel) the whole strategy of the war would have been very different… and much more difficult!”
That is just one of the many reasons why this particular landing craft is such an essential part of any D. DAY collection and forms the central element of King & Country’s latest selection of figures and fighting vehicles that depict the events of 6 June 1944 and the battle for Normandy that followed it…
DD335 "Royal Navy LCVP 1335"
Although the vast majority of the over 23,000 ‘Higgins Boats’ produced during WW2 went to the US Navy and Coastguard several hundred were also supplied to Britain’s Royal Navy which used them to supplement their own LCA’s (Landing Craft Assault).
Royal Navy LCVPS carried the same number of crew as their American counterparts (usually 3 or 4) and were painted in the distinctive RN camouflage colours of white and cold sea blue.
K&C’s LCVP carries a crew of 3 (1 x cox’n and 2 x gunners manning a pair of .30 cal. machine guns in armoured gun mounts). In addition, the ramp of the LCVP can be raised and lowered as the collector prefers.
DD336 "Royal Navy LCVP 1324"
As above but with a different hull number (for those collectors wanting two LCVP’s for their collection). The standing cox’n with raised right arm is also unique to this second version. DD336 has a cox’n gripping the steering wheel with both hands.
All crew on both LCVPs are wearing the American supplied and much preferred U.S. Navy-style inflatable Life Vests together with their British steel helmets and white anti flash hoods, more for warmth than as a fire retardant protection.
And now after the Landing Craft here are some more of the soldiers they carried onto ‘Sword Beach’ on that epic morning of 6 June 1944.
DD342(B) "‘Lying Prone Bren Gunner’ w/Sand base"
Here is the ‘classic’ fighting pose of the British Bren Gunner in action. For almost 50 years the Bren gave sterling service for the British Army since its introduction in 1938. It was so useful and popular that when the L1A1 Self Loading Rifle was brought into service in the late 1950’s the Bren was updated and upgraded to fire the same 7.62mm ammunition.
DD342(G) "‘Lying Prone Bren Gunner’ w/Grass base"
The same figure as above but with a ‘grass’ base and very suitable for displays and dioramas depicting the battle for Normandy after the Allied troops moved away from the landing beaches and moved inland to capture towns, villages and other real estate.
DD343 "‘Crawling Forward’ w/No base"
This British ‘Tommy’ edges cautiously forward with his Lee Enfield rifle. This figure rests on no base therefore can be used equally well in both ‘beach’ and ‘inland’ battle scenes.
DD344 "‘Crouching Rifleman’ w/No base"
One more fighting ‘Tommy’ with no base so he can be easily positioned on a beach, in a field, on a tank or even inside a landing craft... very versatile!
DD345(B) "‘Advancing Set’ w/Sand base"
These two riflemen are taking the fight to the enemy as they move across the beach.
DD345(G) "‘Advancing Set’ w/Grass base"
After successfully defeating the enemy on the beach this deadly duo move inland across the Normandy fields and countryside.
DD353 "‘Kneeling Ready’ w/No base"
Similar to DD343 and 344 this ‘Tommy’ requires no base and can be used in a multitude of locations and positions.
DD354(B) "‘Standing Firing’ w/Sand base"
Another essential action pose for any battle scene.
DD354(G) "‘Standing Firing’ w/Grass base"
As above but suitable for a more rural setting.
2. "THE VISTULA LANCERS"
Originally known as the ‘Vistula Uhlans’, they were exceptionally well-trained Polish Lancers and first-class horsemen in the service of Napoleon and among his favourite regiments of light cavalry.
The regiment saw plenty of action during Napoleon’s campaign in Spain between 1808 and 1811. In 1812 they followed their Emperor into Russia and suffered accordingly. They also took part in his final ‘100 Days Campaign’ of 1815… Loyal to the end.
Here are the first three K&C ‘Vistula Lancers’ this month… with two more to follow.
NA470 "Charging Vistula Lancer"
With his lance couched forward under his arm this ‘Vistula’ spurs his mount into a charging gallop.
NA472 "Vistula Lancer About to Charge"
With lance held up and holding his horse in check this is the moment just prior to going into the ‘charge’.
NA474 "Charging Vistula Lancer Officer"
Officers of the regiment carried only sabres. This officer leads his men, galloping into battle.
3. "THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES"
‘The Hound of the Baskervilles’ is the third of the four crime novels written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and featuring the noted detective, Sherlock Holmes.
The story is set largely on lonely, desolate Dartmoor in Devon in England’s West Country and tells the tale of an attempted murder by a fearsome, diabolical hound of supernatural origin.
Mr. Sherlock Holmes and his intrepid companion, Dr. John Watson are dispatched to Devon to investigate the case.
As one of Sherlock Holmes most enduring mysteries the story has been translated into more than 20 films and television series all over the world including Britain, of course, America, Germany, India and even the former Soviet Union as well as Australia, Italy and the Ukraine.
It’s fair to say that this particular Baskerville Hound gets around the world with amazing ease!
And now it appears in the world of miniatures…
WOD070 "Sherlock Holmes & The Hound of the Baskervilles"
This unique little set features the three principal characters of the story... Mr. Sherlock Holmes wearing his trademark ‘deerstalker’ hat with ‘Inverness’ cape and coat stands four square his right arm extended and aiming his .44 caliber revolver at the approaching beast.
Supporting his friend is the sturdy figure of Dr. Watson, suitably clad in his sensible ‘Harris Tweed’ Norfolk hunting suit. In his hands the good Doctor carries his trusty ‘Elephant Gun’.
And finally we come to the beast itself... a large and ugly looking brute who none of us would like to meet on a dark night on Dartmoor... or anywhere else come to that!
Bright red glowing eyes sit above a gaping, snarling mouthful of sharp, vicious looking teeth sitting above a huge, werewolf-like body... a wild animal of nightmarish proportions!
However putting all that aside... a great little set and the perfect gift for any Sherlock Holmes enthusiast.
WoD068 "Sherlock Holmes 221b Baker St., Townhouse"
Back by popular demand... London’s most famous address (after ‘Buckingham Palace’ that is.)
This handsome 3-storey residence is typical of many 19th Century townhouses which can still be seen all over London today.
It is also the perfect backdrop for our Sherlock Holmes characters or any from the ‘World of Dickens’.
WoD069 "The London Townhouse"
As mentioned before, London is fortunate to still have many different variations of these styles of dwellings all over the capital.
This new version works well on its own or put alongside ‘221b Baker Street’.
Add a few more and you can create a whole street!
4. "SWEET HOME CHICAGO"
Back in normal times, just after the 2019 ‘Chicago Toy Soldier Show’, I met up with show organizers, Roger & Jan Garfield to discuss designing and producing a ‘Special Commemorative Figure’ to mark the 40th Anniversary of this great toy soldier event.
I suggested, and they agreed, to design a G.I. figure that would fit in with K&C’s own very popular ‘VIETNAM’ series.
Together we decided portray a typical G.I. in a more relaxed ‘off-duty’ situation… perhaps enjoying one of the many USO shows that went to Vietnam to entertain the troops.
THE ‘CHICAGO’ CONNECTION
To connect the figure to Chicago I decided to make him from Woodfield Illinois, the location of the Chicago Toy Soldier Show.
Our G.I. is also a ‘Chicago Cubs’ fan, hence his baseball cap. And… we invited him up on stage, to meet a real, live ‘Playboy Playmate’ who also comes from Chicago.
Now, this gorgeous little ‘bunny’ knows she’s in a real, live combat zone which is why she’s wearing a specially-designed, ‘Tiger-Stripe’ camouflage bunny costume!
With a bit of luck our boy will get her to autograph his copy of ‘Playboy’, maybe even get a little kiss on the cheek and well… we’ll leave the rest to your imagination! VN099 Many of these special 2-figure sets will be going to Chicago and will be available from these three great K&C Dealers attending the Show:
SIERRA TOY SOLDIERS
A limited number will also be available direct from King & Country and other K&C Authorised Dealers AFTER THE SHOW.
Order yours now to avoid disappointment.
VN099 ""Hi I'm From Chicago Too!""
AVAILABILITY: Sold Out!
5. "AND NOW... THE RETIREMENTS"
No less than 32 different items across a broad area of K&C series. Check them out and grab’em while you can!
Battle of the Bulge
BBA079 "Seriously Wounded Set"
Another U.S. Army Medic leans over and supports a badly-wounded GI with a stomach wound...
BBA085 "Standing Military Policeman"
“Tommy-Gun” at the ready this MP is on the lookout for any Germans posing as GI’s.
BBG088 "SS Obergruppenfuhrer Paul “Papa” Hausser"
This late-war Hausser saw more than his fair share of action...even losing an eye in the process. Here, map in hand, he studies the terrain.
Age of Napoleon
NA410 "The Hussar Hussie #1 'Monique'"
From ancient times armies have always acquired female ‘camp followers’; women who accompanied their men into battle and fed them, tended their wounds, sometimes even carried their packs and equipment... as well as providing other ‘creature comforts.’
All for the sake of a little protection and safety in a distinctly violent and unsettled world.
In Napoleonic times the practice continued and even increased as Napoleon and his Armies traversed the continent and beyond.
Different regiments attracted different kinds of female companions. The Cavalry being among the smartest turned-out also tended to welcome some of the prettiest ladies...
Here, is one such young lady, Monique, who has attached herself to the 7th Hussars.
NA411 "Hussar Hussie #2 'Sophie'"
Yet another fetching young lass, ‘Sophie’ is much enamoured with the officers of the 3rd Hussars... As they no doubt are with her!
NA413 "A Girl of The Old Guard"
Here, we see one such lass... partly dressed in the uniform of one of Napoleon’s own Imperial Guard Infantry... How well she might fight... who can say...? But she would certainly keep you warm at night!
English Civil War
PnM008 "Oliver Cromwell"
Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658) was the dominant personality of the English Civil War. Originally from a modest country background he rose rapidly through the Parliamentary ranks from a humble troop commander to a regimental colonel and then a Lieutenant General of Horse all within the space of two years.
Although lacking any formal military education he knew instinctively how to lead and train men...and get the best from them.
Eventually he would be given the title “Lord Protector”. Our figure shows him in typical military dress of the early part of the war as a Colonel of Horse. The figure is based on the statue of Cromwell to be found outside Parliament in London...Sword in one hand...bible in the other!
PnM051 "Le Comte De Rochefort"
The Comte (or Count) de Rochefort is another villainous character from the Dumas novel and is an accomplice of the Cardinal and an ally to the beautiful but deadly Milady de Winter.
A skilled swordsman and a ruthless adversary he can be recognized by his eye patch and a long scar across his cheek.
Royal Air Force
RAF072 "Air Vice Marshal Sir Keith Park"
This tall New Zealander was a WW1 Flying Ace who remained in the Royal Air Force after 1918.
At the time of the Battle of Britain, in the summer of 1940, he was in command of No.11 Group RAF tasked with the fighter defence of London and South East England.
A firm supporter of Air Chief Marshal Sir Hugh Dowding, he won a reputation as a shrewd tactician and a popular “hands-on” leader who often flew his own personal Hurricane around his widely dispersed airfields to talk with and listen to his squadron commanders and pilots.
Our figure shows him in flying gear about to take off on one of his regular tours of his fighter airfields.
RAF075 "A Trio Of Aces"
Adolph Gysbert “Sailor” Malan, DSO & BAR, DFC & Bar was a South African pilot in RAF Fighter Command during WW2. During the Battle of Britain he led No. 74 Squadron. His final war tally of ‘victories’ was 27 ‘Kills’, 7 ‘shared’, 3 ‘ probables’ and 16 ‘damaged’.
Our figure shows him as a Squadron Leader during the Battle of Britain.. He left the RAF in 1946 as a Group Commander.
Douglas Robert Steuart Bader, lost his legs in a flying accident in 1931 and was invalided out of the RAF in 1933. With the outbreak of WW2 in 1939 he managed to rejoin the Air Force and by June 1940 was made Squadron Leader of No. 242 Squadron.
In August 1941 he bailed out over France and spent the rest of the war in various prisoner-of-war camps including the infamous ‘Colditz’.
His wartime record included 22 kills’, 4 ‘shared’, 6 ’probables’ and 11 ‘damaged’. Among his awards were the DSO & Bar, DFC & Bar and ... a later knighthood. The K&C figure portrays him as a Squadron Leader in mid 1940.
Our final RAF figure is Alan Christopher Deere, known to his friends as ‘Al’.
This New Zealand-born pilot joined the RAF in 1937 and flew during the Battle of France ... the evacuation of Dunkirk and the Battle of Britain.
In 1942 he took command of No. 403 Squadron, Royal Canadian Air Force and swiftly established himself as a ‘born leader’. Unlike both Malan and Bader he remained in the RAF after WW2 eventually becoming an Air Commodore.
His personal awards included the DSO, DFC & Bar and the French Croix de Guerre.
His wartime tally of victories ... 22 ‘kills’, 10 ‘probables’ and 18 ‘damaged’
‘Al’ Deere passed away in 1995 and, fittingly, his ashes were scattered over the River Thames from a Spitfire!
US Marine Corps
USMC020 "Crouching Marine Firing Rifle"
Staying low to make a smaller target (hopefully) this Marine fires off a few rounds from his M1 ‘Garand’ rifle.
USMC026 "Marine Sniper"
A sitting (on ammunition crates) Marine taking careful aim with his M1 ‘Garand’ Rifle.
USMC027 "Crouching Marine"
Keeping his head down this ‘Leatherneck’ makes his way forward under heavy and sustained enemy fire!
USMC030 "Running w/BAR Marine"
Clutching his heavy but reliable B.A.R. (Browning Automatic Rifle) another Marine moves rapidly forward.
USMC039 "Marine Casualty Set"
The price of FREEDOM, as the saying goes, never comes FREE!
Here two marines have paid the ultimate price...
USMC046 "Kneeling Marine w/ Pistol"
There must be a good reason this Marine has taken out his M1911 single action, semi-automatic .45 caliber pistol.
Designed by John Browning, the M1911 was adopted by the US Military in 1911... It went on to provide long and service well into the late 1980’s before being replaced by the Italian Beretta 92F.
Even after more than 70 years the M1911’s reputation for ‘stopping power’... reliability and sturdiness remains undiminished.
USMC047 "Marine Casualties"
The price of victory is never cheap! These two Marines prove that... As one Marine falls to the ground his buddy next to him takes a bullet to the chest.
VN016 "The Loader"
The perfect ‘add-on’ to VN015... This Marine man-handles one of the large 106mm rounds ready to reload one of the ONTOS barrels.
VN017 "The U.S.M.C. M274 “MULE”"
The U.S. Military M274 1/2 Ton, 4x4 Utility Platform Truck was a 4-wheel drive gasoline – powered truck / tractor type of vehicle that could carry up to half a ton of weapons, ammunition or supplies with an off –road capability.
First introduced in 1956 it saw plenty of action during the Vietnam conflict and remained in service until the 1980’s.
As a completely open and exposed vehicle the M274, better known as “The Mule”, offered zero protection to the driver and was mainly operated in an infantry support role as previously stated.
“Mules” could also be adapted to carry many types of conventional weapon including the M40 106mm Recoilless Rifle... TOW Anti Tank Missiles and even both the M60 and .50 Cal. Machine Guns.
Our K&C model can carry a wounded Marine and a Navy Corpsman or a load of supplies... The “Mule” itself comes with its driver together with his M16.
VN052 "Charlie Don’t Surf!"
These were the immortal words spoken by Colonel Bill Kilgore, a battalion commander in the 9th Air Cavalry Regiment in Francis Ford Coppola’s Vietnam epic “Apocalypse Now”.
Kilgore is a surfing fanatic who loves war... and surfing. After successfully leading a helicopter assault on a coastal Viet Cong village the Colonel is delighted to find that the nearby beaches offer some excellent surfing opportunities.
When one of his troopers questions the advisability of surfing near a Viet Cong stronghold Kilgore assures him that he has nothing to worry about because... “Charlie don’t surf!”
A classic movie... a classic line... and a great little figure of an Air Cav Colonel who loves surfing.
VN058 "Viet Cong Prisoner"
Sitting dejected and forlorn this ‘Victor Charlie’ is lucky that the Marines captured him... If it had been the ARVN (Army of the Republic of Vietnam) that caught him his fate would be a lot more uncertain...
VN078 "NVA/VC Assault Team Set #1"
As this NVA regular prepares to throw one of his Chinese-made ‘potato-masher’ grenades the black-clad Viet Cong provides covering fire.
WH024, WH025, WH067 are newly added in the ‘End of The Run Remainders‘. Please click the items to check the updated prices.
WH024 "Standing Engineer"
Shovel in one hand and dressed in the off-white “fatigue duties” trousers this soldier is awaiting orders.
WH025 "Engineer w/Pickaxe"
This soldier with sleeves rolled up is ready for work.
WH026 "Engineer w/Land Mines"
Among all their other duties engineers were responsible for “sowing” mine fields.
WH066 "Propaganda Kompanien Kamerman"
Virtually all German Military War correspondents, photographers and cameramen came under the overall control of the Propaganda Ministry.
Our movie cameraman is in Wehrmacht uniform and using his “Arriflex” camera to record the action. At that time the Arriflex was considered the best camera of its kind in the world.
Due to the problems of recovering damaged heavy tanks (such as Tigers and Panthers) it was necessary to produce an equally heavy tracked vehicle to perform the task ... The Bergepanther was the result.
Built on a Panther hull it usually employed a crew of three to operate the vehicle and its special equipment.
Our model appears as it would have been seen on both the Western and Eastern Fronts during 1944 and ’45.
WH069 "Tank Repair Crew"
A useful little 2-man set of crouching and kneeling Panzer repair crew ... Ideal to go with WH067 or indeed any of K&C’S German fighting vehicles or even captured Allied ones!
WH081 "Kneeling Panzer Grenadier"
This figure is doing what Grenadiers do... about to throw a grenade!
WH093 "Hitler, His Generals & The Atlantic Wall"
This original display set portrays just one of the many meetings where Hitler, the amateur architect, and three of his top generals, including Rommel review some of the latest design models for additional Atlantic Wall fortifications.
The set includes an arms-folded Fuhrer, Field Marshal Rommel, Field Marshal Walter Model on leave from the Eastern Front and SS Oberst-Gruppenfuhrer ‘Sepp’ Dietrich who would go on to command the 1st SS Panzer Corps during the Battle of Normandy following the invasion.
In front of all four figures is a large table on which are displayed a number of different bunker and pill-box design models for Hitler to comment on and, hopefully, approve.
A great little set that helps tells part of a very big and dramatic story!
WS196 "Rommel in France 1940"
K&C has produced several Rommel figures, mostly in his Afrika Korps uniform but never one as he appeared in France in 1940 during his command of the 7th. Panzer Division. ere he pauses at the side of a country road perhaps enjoying a sandwich and a cup of coffee.
WS198 "Feld Gendarmerie Dog Handler"
On duty with guard and dog.
Best wishes and... Happy Collecting!
Andy C. Neilson
Co-founder & Creative Director
King & Country