So yesterday I made the trek South to York to attend one of the highlights of my wargaming show year, Vapnartak.
Concerned that with it being the first show of a post Covid environment John, Neil and I set off early and got a decent parking space near the show and also a nice warm foyer to stand in.The organisers acknowledging that given its previous success had changed the format considerably. No middle floor hosting their famous tabletop sale. No wargames on the lower floors and the number or traders being reduced, although that may have been down to certain companies simply not wanting to attend. A shame really. Anyway I can say the show was well spaced out and although there were a lot of people it was all very civilised and easy to move around in.
The dealers were spread over the extra floor space and the limited number of games consigned to the third and fourth floors.It worked really well to be honest, but then Im easily pleased and not one of those people nervous about Covid. Ive had my jabs and recognise thats as good as it will get. Being virtually first through the doors I didnt witness the long, long queue that stretched well over a hundred yards but when most had got into the place it didnt seem crowded to me at all.
Yes there was a couple of pinch points near some of the very popular traders but the majority were fine. I got the impression that it had been worthwhile for the trade to attend and I know Treefellas and Last Valley virtually sold out by lunchtime. The show was more about showing that wargaming was back and I think it was a message that was understood.
In an effort to downsize I have wanted to move on all my 6mm Napoleonic armies but because of Covid it had been a non starter, but the York show allowed me to sell my French and Austrians. To be very honest it was surprisingly emotional but having given away all my 6mm terrain boards I just knew it was the right thing to do. It was like losing a very close friend.
Napoleonic's had always been my first interest and I know I will never paint up new armies especially as they would have to be 28mm. I just need to shift my Russian, Prussian, Swedish etc armies to complete the downsizing. I also sold all my 54mm painted medieval's which was a real shame as I had invested a lot of effort in painting them, but again they hadnt been used and probably never would be.
I did do some buying naturally.I needed? some Perry Scots ECW cavalry and a unit of Foundry renaissance pike although the pricing still smarts.
The show for me however was more about meeting wargamers I hadnt seen for some time, and also discussing/boring new wargaming chums with various tales.[all true] I also finally met John Tilson a wargamer who had known Peter Gilder well and had wargamed with him and had also taken part in the Battleground series with Duncan Macfarlane. I intend to write up the meeting for my Gilder tribute. John very kindly put up with my inane gibbering, although I did have to buy the teas.
So how was the show? Well the time seemed to fly which is always a good sign. I know John and Neil had really enjoyed it and for me I just enjoyed the whole vibe. Toy soldiers, wargamers and some retail therapy what was not to like. I did take some images of the games but I dont think I did them justice so can only apologise for not publishing them.
POSTSCRIPT; I was asked if I could post a few images from the show, so I have, these are the only ones that were fairly decent and do the games some justice.