Wednesday, 14 March 2018


The Usual Practical Details

The Spring Big Game 2018 ("The Great Wigmore Cattle Rustle aka The Fall of the House of Mortimer?" will take place this Saturday 17th March 2018 at Burley Gate Village Hall, Herefordshire, from 10am to 5.30pm. 

Setting up of tables will take place from c. 9am, so if you want to come earlier than 10am please feel free.

Directions to Burley Gate Village Hall can be found here.

Please bring your own lunch. Those who forget can (usually) purchase provisions at the Burley Gate Village Shop, located in the Portakabin right next door to the Hall itself.

Cost is £10.00 as usual.

Photography of the BIG GAME is encouraged! Please don't forget your cameras!

The Hereford VBCW Modelling Challenge No.1 ("Create a Landing Fleet") is still running. Please see previous AUTUMN BIG GAME 2017 briefing posts for details. We still have 4 lots of plastic boats available for anyone who wishes to take part and can say that they are likely to be available for the AUTUMN BIG GAME 2018 (to be held in October 2018, presently planned as River Crossing Game, or can otherwise get their (slightly) converted boats back to the Umpires before then.

Rules Queries

Since the publication of the SPRING BIG GAME 2018 GENERAL BRIEFING, some rules queries have been received. To assist anyone with similar queries, here are the Umpires rulings or clarifications:

(1). a unit does NOT have to use the same Action Card in both phases of a single turn (usually but not necessarily the "Movement" phase and then the "Action" phase). In each phase, it is for the player to determine the Action Card to be used by each of his units. Please note this has a helpful side effect, namely that cards do not have to be placed on the table next to a unit, but can (and should) be retained at all times in the player's "hand".

(2). "You CANNOT increase range by use of a template" The furthest edge of the template must be within the range of the template weapon firing.

(3). If you are using Roadside Bomb as part of your Platoon Roster, please check with Mort on the day as to their correct use. Remember Mort wrote the WTDW Rules!

(4). Miscellaneous stuff about rustling (and saving) agricultural animals :

(a). can troops allocated to rounding up livestock ignore the "unit coherency" rule - NO
(b). can one figure control more than one animal? - NO
(c). can "rustled" (or "saved") livestock have to be led off table ? - NO
(d). can vehicles be used to "herd" animals - NO

Note : making "base to base" contact with an agricultural animal and stating "I am rustling this (whatever)" or "I am saving this (whatever)" counts as an ACTION for the purposes of the phase rules. Only farmers, infantrymen or cavalrymen can rustle/save animals.


Everyone familiar with VBCW Hereford knows that the City & County Dining and Refreshment Rooms, right next to the Old House in High Town, is the place to go for the latest gossip and information![1]

The City and County Dining & Refreshment Rooms, as situated just by The Old House in High Town
But what is hard information and what is mere gossip? Amidst the chink of tea cups and hushed whispers (both Lord De Braose's informants and agents of the Ecclesiastial Intelligence Service are said to have permanently booked tables at "The City & County") it is often very difficult to tell. But scrape some jam onto that scone (cream is now a rationed delicacy in Hereford) and lean forward:

(1). Lord de Braose is in serious danger of disgrace and retirement. He has not been seen in public for weeks. It is said that he wanders the chambers of the Shire Hall throughout the night, wailing and groaning "My boys! My boys...." and has had to be heavily sedated by his doctor.

(2). Storm Commander Giles has not recovered from the wounds he sustained in the last battle. His position is serious and has been complicated by further infection. This must be true because Edna heard it from Matron at the hospital. There is real doubt as to whether he can stay in command of Government forces.

(3)."The Mortimer All Round Defence Plan" is a complete figment of Sir Barrington - Patchpole's imagination.

(4). Miss Nemone is ready to marry "The Shropshire Swain" if it will "save Mortimer Country". What a girl!

(5). Comrade Professor Winters has never forgiven the Anglicans for their poor performance at the Second Battle of Ledbury.

(6). The Revd. Duff Postin has been having secret meetings with Major Straitt-Jackett. The Major has asked for extension of the "battlefield truce" brokered at The Battle of Berrington Approaches and a joint attack against the Not so Broad Communist Front. The Rev. Postin has demanded the return into Anglican hands of the Bishop of Hereford. The Bishop is being transported in one of the BUF's trucks to Mortimer Country for a "handover" and subsequent Anglican/Government alliance.

(7). The Soviets have provided the Not so Broad Communist Front with military advice and assistance. One of their top men, Comrade Colonel I.V. Knokisblokov, has been seen in company with Comrade Professor Winters and Comrade Gollumroo.

(8). Lady de Braose is a tart. She's been seen "in company" with Comrade Professor Winters, and Comrade Gollumroo, and Comrade Colonel I.V. Knokisblokov, and Sir Barrington Patchpole KC (chaperoned by Lady Deirdre). She is a treble agent negotiating for the handover of the Mustard manuscript to Mortimer hands for use as a "negotiating weapon" with the Government. But what price will the Communists demand in exchange ? And have you seen those photographs !

(9). Captain Arrowsmith has not left Hereford. He simply cannot be seen in public because of the injuries he sustained in that recent explosion at the Royal Ordnance Factory, Rotherwas. That must be true, because the editor of "The Hereford Times" has a photograph but is banned from publishing it. HM Government are determined to hush it all up.

Captain Arrowsmith suffered serious injuries as a result of the ROF Rotherwas explosion.
(10). No-one knows the true identity of "The Shropshire Swain", but he pens terrible love poetry.

(11). Winston Churchill himself has been seen in Herefordshire. It is said that he is raising an independent army of "Constitutionalists" ready to intervene at the right moment in the Hereford VBCW. The right moment is said to be one of complete surprise to all concerned.

(12). Lord de Braose is now addicted to morphine. See (1) above. See (8) above. Have you seen those photographs ? Who else features in that dreadful book by Mustard ? Not Daphne !

(13). The convoy carrying Commandante Jay and his Politically Confused Spanish Nationalist Catholic Monarchists was sunk as it left the River Severn and entered the River Wye. Commandante Jay and all his men were drowned. This was the result of an audacious Anglican commando action lead by the dashing Captain - General Jermingham himself / a drifting Government anti shipping mine.

(14). Captain Morgan's son has returned "from abroad" to take over leadership of the Morgan clan and avenge his father's death.

(15). Captain Morgan was a traitor to the Government cause. The shame of it! Morgan Junior served in the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War. Chances are Morgan Junior will betray his masters just like his father. He's supposed to have a senior position in the Mortimer LDVs, don't you know ?

(16). There is a "spike" in Hereford's birth rate. This is very unusual in such troubled times. The most popular boy's name for newborns is "Stokkies". Who would have thought it ?

(17). Mortimer Country has recruited some disaffected Government scientists. They have developed "special weapons" including an "IFF Trigger" for their minefields and bombs.

(18). Mortimer Country's minefields and bombs are highly unstable. This has been a major problem for the disaffected Government scientists recruited by Sir Barrington Patchpole.

(19). There is no bacon to be found in Hereford's markets.

(20). Captain Arrowsmith is dead. He was on a flight to Australia in order to lead a BUF Recruiting drive and his plane went down somewhere over Borneo. If he survived the landing, he didn't survive the attentions of the local natives. This must be true, because CBS is reporting it in America.

CBS's intrepid Borneo correspondent with the head of Captain Arrowsmith.
(21). HM Government and Sir Barrington Patchpole KC have brokered a deal. Neither can afford to lose an engagement in Mortimer Country. Sir Barrington could never reach an agreement with the Communists, and has no wish for Miss Nemone to sacrifice herself to the Anglicans (see (4) above). If Captain General Jermingham or Comrade Professor Winters even gets close to Wigmore Hall, the trap will be sprung !

(22). Wigmore Hall has many treasures. Lady Deirdre's first husband was a renowned Egyptologist and bitter rival of Howard Carter and Lord Carnaervon.

(23). Sir Barrington Patchpole KC is a great friend of Lord Emsworth, and both keep prize pigs.It is said that Sir Barrington would sacrifice Miss Nemone in order to save "Fat Ted", his prize porker. Poor Nemone! Would it be better to have an arranged marriage to "The Shropshire Swain" or be "carried off" by those thugs from the Not So Broad Communist Front ? Or the BUF?

(24). Morale will shortly collapse in Hereford. It's even said that George Formby is coming to give a "special concert" !!

(25). The Soviets are experiencing the greatest difficulty with the 're-education' of Sir Alan McGuffin. It is not that Sir Alan's political views now cause difficulty : he has become a full convert to the concept of a "worker's paradise". Rather, it is his unbreakable mental and physical addiction to the thoroughly bourgeois game of golf. While Sir Alan insists on golf as his favourite pastime, he will never be released from Re-Education Camp No.1 (situated somewhere outside Presteigne).

As the intelligence reports gleaned from "The Capital & Counties" gossip flood into the headquarters of Captain - General Jermingham, Storm Commander Giles and Comrade Professor Winters, who knows what is actually true ? This, as with so many questions, can only be answered by participation in the HEREFORD VBCW SPRING BIG GAME 2018!


[1]. The modern day traveller may still enjoy a cup of tea in the "City and County". Unfortunately, it is somewhat more expensive than in 1938 and is now called "Starbucks". See "Hereford VBCW : Then and Now" for full details.

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