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London for Wargamers - 10/6/2009 8:04:37 PM   
SireChaos

 

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Last night, I came back from a trip to London, Wednesday morning to Monday afternoon. In addition to this city´s many other assets (an efficient and smoothly functioning public transport system is not one of them), there are a few places in London that are of interest for any wargamer, or in fact any person interested in military history. Besides the Imperial War Museum (duh!), you will find the Science Museum a treasure trove, in particular the aircraft and maritime exhibits. Better yet, both museums (as well as the British Museum and Natural History Museum - but I digress) are free.

Instead of simply boring you with an endless post about the things I´ve seen, I will bore you with several (each not so endless) posts, and post some of the pictures I took.

This first picture is part of the exhibit in the central hall of the Imperial War Museum. The biplane is a Sopwith Camel, the plane on the left is a Spitfire Ia. The green plane on the right is one of the very few remaining examples of the He-162 Salamander. The big missile is a Polaris SLBM. On the ground there is Montgomery´s personal Grant tank (the tan bits behind the missile), a T-34/85 and a Jagdpanther (I have a better picture of those last two).




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/6/2009 8:27:24 PM   
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Yep - London has some of the finest museums and, as you say, they're free...Was at the IWM last year in fact (or the beginning of this year possibly) and it was very, very good.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/6/2009 8:41:32 PM   
SireChaos

 

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The missile on the right in this picture is a V-2. In front of it is a searchlight, the kind that was used defending against night bombers. I´ll leave the plane behind it for later because there´s another picture that shows it without obstructions.
On the far left, we have the front parts of a British WW1-era Mk.V tank. I took another picture showing it in full, but it came out very blurry. I don´t remember what the vehicle directly behind it is, or even if what is visible might be part of a gun carriage or something like that. Behind that, the large barrel pointing up at a 45 degree angle, is a heavy mortar from WW1, and behind that, the familiar shape of an M4 Sherman tank.
Finally, the thing hanging above the gun and tank, visible almost exactly head-on, is a V-1 - there will be a better picture of another one, from the Science Museum, later on.

I don´t remember what the object directly at the front of the picture is - maybe one of you guys can help me out?




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/6/2009 8:47:05 PM   
SireChaos

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: JudgeDredd

Yep - London has some of the finest museums and, as you say, they're free...Was at the IWM last year in fact (or the beginning of this year possibly) and it was very, very good.


If you´re in London and have the time, reserve one day for the Imperial War Museum plus HMS Belfast (which isn´t free but moored close enough to the shore for a good look), and one day each for the Science Museum, Natural History Museum and British Museum. Science and Natural History in particular are also great for children. The Launchpad at the Science Museum (do-it-yourself physics experiments) made me wish I was 20 years younger.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/6/2009 9:06:49 PM   
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If you want more WWII after the above mentioned museums, I would like to add the War Ministery to the list (located 2mins from Westminster Abby). Again, not free, but definitively worth it. It shows the offices from where Churchill lead the war.

The world map placed on a wall where every single ship movement was placed by a pin is a great piece of history. Not much paper left of the map in the Atlantic

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/6/2009 9:52:36 PM   
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OMG, I just came back from a trip to London, ....




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/6/2009 10:49:29 PM   
SireChaos

 

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When were you at the IWM? I was there on Friday, from 10 AM to 2 PM more or less.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 7:38:21 AM   
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I was there Saturday the 26th in the afternoon.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 12:40:25 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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Outstanding. Of my five visits to London so far in my life, on two I was too young to be in charge of the itinerary and on the other three I had only a few hours between connecting flights. One of these days...

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 12:47:15 PM   
SireChaos

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Outstanding. Of my five visits to London so far in my life, on two I was too young to be in charge of the itinerary and on the other three I had only a few hours between connecting flights. One of these days...


By all means, yes. But bring very comfortable shoes (my feet still hate me) and a high frustration threshold when dealing with the public transport system. Oh, and lots of money, too - London is an expensive city.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 1:13:12 PM   
Joram

 

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Nonsense , the public transportation system is quite good in London.  Maybe it was just a bad day.  You should try Manhattan.  Oof!
Anyway, If you can get away for a day from London and like tanks, gotta go to Bovington down in Devon.  Did it all using public transportation (though it's about a fair hike from the last rail station to the museum).  They have a pretty amazing collection. The IWM is nice but was actually smaller than I expected though they pack everything in pretty tight so there's a lot to see.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 4:15:30 PM   
jwilkerson


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quote:

ORIGINAL: SireChaos

By all means, yes. But bring very comfortable shoes (my feet still hate me) and a high frustration threshold when dealing with the public transport system. Oh, and lots of money, too - London is an expensive city.


Lots of money I agree with - but I found the tube to be a refreshing alternative to the "walk, walk, walk" option I was using the first few days I was there.



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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 6:30:34 PM   
SireChaos

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: jwilkerson


quote:

ORIGINAL: SireChaos

By all means, yes. But bring very comfortable shoes (my feet still hate me) and a high frustration threshold when dealing with the public transport system. Oh, and lots of money, too - London is an expensive city.


Lots of money I agree with - but I found the tube to be a refreshing alternative to the "walk, walk, walk" option I was using the first few days I was there.




Well, better than walking across the distances we´re talking about in London, that´s true, but far from good. It´s unreliable, the stations are dirty and derelict, whole lines get cancelled over the weekend, some of the stations seem designed to be as confusing and labyrinthine as possible (Elephant and Castle comes to mind as exhibit A here). One of the major crossroads of the tube system, Bank and Monument, is undergoing escalator renovations right now, so changing between tube lines in impossible there. And so on...

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 6:46:42 PM   
jwilkerson


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Hum, I must have gotten lucky, I found the tube stations to be clean and very organized and fast moving. I was operating around GREEN PARK station as my base with Picadilly, Victoria and Bakerloo lines as my primary pathways. There were a few planned outages on the weekends, but these were easy to work around due to the numerous alternate routes.



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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 8:35:16 PM   
SireChaos

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: jwilkerson

Hum, I must have gotten lucky, I found the tube stations to be clean and very organized and fast moving. I was operating around GREEN PARK station as my base with Picadilly, Victoria and Bakerloo lines as my primary pathways. There were a few planned outages on the weekends, but these were easy to work around due to the numerous alternate routes.




My hotel was about halfway between Barbican (Circle, Metropolitan and Hammersmith lines) and Old Street (Northern line, east branch).
Green Park has Picadilly, Victoria and Jubilee lines on my tube plan. You´d have been out of luck last weekend, as Victoria and Jubilee were both shut down over the weekend. Bank and Monument, as I said, were unavailable for changing lines. And King´s Cross / St Pancras is a labyrinth.

Oh my. I guess I´ve been spoiled by public transport here in the Frankfurt area.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 8:39:07 PM   
SireChaos

 

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Here you see the V-2 again, and another view of the Grant tank beside it. The plane in the center is a FW-190, to the right is a P-51, and on the right edge of the picture is the tail of the Spitfire. The object on the first floor, below the FW-190, appears to be the nose, with turret, of a heavy bomber.




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 8:42:00 PM   
SireChaos

 

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This is an Italian manned torpedo, minus the warhead. The guy in the brown jacket serves as a useful size comparison.
In the background, on the far left, is the T-34/85 again.




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 8:46:41 PM   
SireChaos

 

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This is the tail fin of a Bf-110 night fighter, flown by the Luftwaffe´s leading night fighter ace. It´s hard to make out at this resolution, but each kill is marked with its date, and the silhouettes distinguish between two-engined and four-engined aircraft.




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 8:48:38 PM   
SireChaos

 

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And here we have the T-34/85, with the Jagdpanther in the background.




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 9:29:53 PM   
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And for a change of pace, here is the stern 68Lb gun on the Warrior.






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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 9:34:30 PM   
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The RN must have liked the 68 Lbr size, here from an earlier age, is a 68 Lbr carronade, on board the Victory.






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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/7/2009 9:55:56 PM   
jwilkerson


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Oops, technically those last two would be "Southern England for Wargamers" rather than just "London for Wargamers". So back to London, here a 2 of many of Assyrian Warriors, early 1st Millineum, BC, I got large versions of these which are needed to see the detail, but have to upload reduced size for the forum, if anyone wants larger versions, lemme know. These are from the British Museum.











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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/8/2009 4:46:04 AM   
jnier


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< Message edited by jnier -- 10/8/2009 4:49:43 AM >

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/8/2009 1:28:01 PM   
sprior


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I took my son to IWM last month too, and Pompey dockyard earlier in the month. Some pics on FB, if anyone wants to add me as a friend. (reading it back makes me sound like a sad lonely git doesn't it?)

Bovington tank museum is in Dorset, just so no-one gets lost trying to find it. If you drive there you drive past the pongo's test areas so you mught get to see some of the prestent stuff put through it's paces. The last time I was at Bovington they had a Sherman and a couple of other tanks out and about.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/9/2009 5:04:29 PM   
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Some other places to try
Duxford IWM - loads of aircraft but also a landwarfare hall (Got the Tiger from Saving Private Ryan and a JSII). Usually you'll see various WW2 planes landing and taking off from the runway. Nothing like a fly past from a Spitfire or a Mustang.
Chatham Docks - where Victory was built - longest building in the wold at the time for making the ropes required for the RN.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/9/2009 5:21:05 PM   
E

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: jwilkerson

OMG, I just came back from a trip to London, ....






I like the nose of the Lanc, visible beneath the FW.

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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/9/2009 6:22:44 PM   
SireChaos

 

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Next one... This is HMS Belfast in all her triple-turreted glory, permanently moored a few hundred meters from Tower Bridge - in fact you can see Tower Bridge in the background on the right.




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/9/2009 6:24:29 PM   
SireChaos

 

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This diorama is at the Science Museum, showing a V-2 being prepared for launch.




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/9/2009 6:28:37 PM   
SireChaos

 

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This is the model of HMS Vanguard, the last British battleship.
The model behind it should be HMS Monarch, one of the first dreadnaughts.




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RE: London for Wargamers - 10/9/2009 6:36:01 PM   
SireChaos

 

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Here´s HMS Lord Nelson, the last British pre-dreadnaught and the last battleship to be built with a bow ram.
On the upper right is a smaller model of the pre-dreadnaught HMS Albion; if I decipher the writing correctly, she was the first battleship to use water-tube boilers, whatever that is.




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