A Very British Civil War 1938: Royalist Units in Pembrokeshire

The Loyal West Carmarthenshire Greenjackets (who refer to themselves as ‘The Chosen Men’) are a light infantry unit raised chiefly from Loyalist land-owners and estate workers in western Carmarthenshire. Partly welsh-speaking, the unit is tasked with patrolling the eastern end of the Landsker Marches; in an arc stretching around the north and east sides of the vital railway-junction at Whitland. In contrast to the similarly-roled Loyal Landsker Legion, the Greenjackets have built up a reputation based on military expertise – fieldcraft, toughness and marksmanship – rather than sheer brutality and fear. Consequently, they have built up an extensive network of informants and listening-posts, based mainly on the power of Mams, Nans, aunties and other little Welsh old ladies, who know all and see all and are always keen to share all with a nice, polite young man who is willing to stop for a cup of tea and a Welsh-cake… for several hours (and who will sell their own grandchildren for a pound of Twining’s)…

Their Commanding Officer, Lt Col Howard ‘Honker’ Foley DSO MC DFC is a colourful character, who was commissioned into the Rifle Brigade in WW1, before transferring to the Royal Flying Corps, with whom he served in the Balkans Campaign. His career continued after WW1 and he served with the RAF on the North-West Frontier, in Afghanistan, the Levant and Arabia, before finally resigning his Commission and returning to his estate at Llanboidy. However, adventure beckoned once more and he was soon flying casualty-evacuation missions for the French Foreign Legion in West Africa before further adventures in Canada and Kenya. With the approach of war, he formed a highly efficient LDV Militia in the Llanboidy area, which eventually became the Greenjackets. However, the Welsh Nationalists refused to accept their neutrality as an LDV and their belligerence forced the Greenjackets to side with the King. The figures are Musketeer/Footsore Miniatures Royal Irish Constabulary Auxiliaries, plus a few dismounted Yeomanry Cavalry figures:

The Loyal Landsker Legion is a highly-mobile and well-armed mounted infantry unit with partial mechanisation, having been formed by the Narberth land-owner and former Indian Army cavalry officer, Banister Templeton in reaction to raids and banditry by Welsh Nationalists. The unit is raised chiefly from Welsh-speaking Loyalists living in the ‘Landsker’ border area of central Pembrokeshire and is tasked with patrolling the Landsker Marches and keeping the railway and the main A40 road free from Welsh Nationalist interference. The Legion is well-known for its bottle-green uniforms with grass-green facings, which were deliberately chosen as a way of blending in when on ‘external’ operations north of the Landsker (bottle-green being a popular uniform colour among Welsh Nationalist factions). However, their terrifying reputation for brutality has earned them fear and hatred in equal measure from the Welsh-speaking peoples north of the Landsker, as well as admiration from the BUF Blackshirts. The figures are Musketeer Miniatures Yeomanry/BUF Cavalry:

The King’s Dragoon Guards: The Royalist enclave of Pembrokeshire was firmly at the back of the queue for reinforcements and after the loss of all the deep-water ports on the Milford Haven Waterway, the supply situation became even more critical. Nevertheless, some reinforcements did get through, including ‘C’ Squadron of the King’s Dragoon Guards. Their Vickers Mk VIb Light Tanks were small and light enough to be loaded onto coastal craft and unloaded at the small harbours in Tenby and Saundersfoot. The models here are by Warlord Games, with crew by Empress Miniatures:

 The ‘English Mistery’, so enthusiastically supported by Baron de Loutson and his friends, was a curious mix of fascism, ultra-Royalism, nostalgia and historical revisionism, which sought a return to feudalism and an agrarian economy. Consequently, instead of a military band to enthuse his forces, the Baron formed a Morris Side. The terrifying spectacle of the Carew & Cresselly Morris regularly provoked fear and revulsion in friend and foe alike and resulted in legislation from all sides (with varying degrees of severity) and the story of the post-war Morris Trials is well known.

The King’s enemies accused the Morris-men of abusing the Laws of Armed Conflict, in that they blurred the line between combatants and the traditionally non-combatant status of military musicians. Indeed, many Morris Sides, with their proficient use of Whiffling-Sticks, were employed during the war as close-assault troops. Figures by Woodbine Miniatures:

Even though they were on his own side, Viscount Tenby was finally forced to act and imposed strict restrictions, with severe penalties for infraction, on the length of time that Morris could be perpetrated:

This entry was posted in 28mm Figures, Painted Units, VBCW - A Very British Civil War, VBCW Royalist. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A Very British Civil War 1938: Royalist Units in Pembrokeshire

  1. ed parody says:

    Very well done! Can’t wait to read the rest. Scenery and figs, beautiful!

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