Saturday, November 28, 2009

Toy Soldiers

While wandering along Greytown's main street during our recent visit to the Wairarapa, admiring its Victorian buildings, my attention was caught by a fine display of toy soldiers in a shop window.

Now, I'm not a great fan of buying souvenirs; I really have no need to add to the clutter of my life. But anything with a connection, however tenuous, to my writing demands closer study. Toy soldiers play a part in my later books; a small part, but one with a certain significance. So the thought of having a set of my very own was tempting.

I found that the soldiers are made right there in Greytown, by a small family firm. The next day I went to their tiny shop just off the main street, and after much agonising I chose the Earl of Uxbridge and the Colour Party from the 1st Foot Guard, all from Waterloo. Here they are in as much of their glorious detail as a small picture can show:

A larger version can be seen here.

Imperial Productions doesn't have a website, but a potted history of the firm can be found here, and a few illustrations here.

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