AS PROMISED - SAMPLE CHAPTER FROM SCOTTISH MILITARY DISASTERS - > Book Extract

*This one’s not on an article of mine on a military theme, but I think it’s interesting - Selling Nova Scotia

** Those who enjoyed reading about the Royal Scots’ Armistice Day battle with the Bolsheviks in 1918 might be interested in the same fight as seen from a Canadian viewpoint - Canada’s Winter War

*** Read about the blunder that made Canada an easy target for invasion from the United States - Undefended Border

**** Read about the Second World War's  Lord McHaw Haw                                                 

***** Serious questionmarks over the official version of one the British Army's most dearly held legends - The Real Mackay?

******** It's been a while since I posted a new article. This one's called Temptation

******** Read about how the most Highland of the Highland regiments during the Second World War fared in the Canadian Rockies - Drug Store Commandos.

********* January 2016 marks the centenary of Winston Churchill taking command of 6th Royal Scots Fusiliers on the Western Front. How did the man who sacked so many British generals during the Second World War make out in his own most senior battlefield command? Find out by having a look at Churchill in the Trenches .  

********** We now have a  Guide to Scottish military museums on this site.  

*********** Just weeks before the outbreak of the First World War one of Britain's most bitter enemies walked free from a Canadian jail  - Dynamite Dillon

************ Click to read - - Victoria's Royal Canadians - about one of the more unusual of the British regiments.

************* Read an article about the Royal Scots and their desperate fight against the Bolsheviks on Armistice Day 1918 - Forgotten War A second article, looks at the same battle but through a Canadian lens .

************** The 2018 Book of the Year Award has just been announced. See Book of the Year

***************No-one has got back to me with a German source for the claim that the kilties during the First World War were known as The Ladies from Hell . See My Challenge to You

*************** *A map showing the old Scottish regimental recruiting districts can now be seen by clicking Recruiting Area Map .

***************** The Fighting Men 1746  article now includes the estimated strengths of the Jacobite clan regiments which marched into England in 1745 See Clan Strengths

**************** ** I've posted a fresh article - Scotland’s Forgotten Regiments. Guess what it's about.  

****************** The High Court Hearing in London in May 2012 attracted a lot of visitors to this site. So, I've decided to keep the link to my latest article on the massacre in the Blog section. See Batang Kali Revisited  

A Few of My Favourite Planes
I have a soft-spot for the Gloster Gladiator fighter bi-plane. The Gladiator was replaced by the Hurricane and Spitfire but did see some combat during the Second World War, most notably in Norway and Malta. So, not one of the world's greatest fighter planes. But it has a special place for me because I regularly used to win balsa wood rubber band powered models of it while I was at Primary School. I can't remember what I won the models for and my guess is that the school didn't really explain. Decades later I found a prize certificate from the Scottish Milk Marketing Board informing me that I'd won third place in one of its national competitions. I remembered the guy from the board presenting it to me but thought at the time that the whole class had come third and I had been selected at random to take it from the certificate from him. The school was not big on prizes. But once in a while there was a prize table put out and some kids were invited to select something from it. I always chose the balsa Gladiator. My dad would build them and we would take it to the park at Stathaven where the model seldom survived more than a half-dozen flights. Hmm, I suppose a promised "favourite planes". Stay tuned.

Shameless Plug #9 - With Wellington was among the books recommended as an excellent Christmas present by the prestigious The Society for Army Historical Research. There was another mysterious surge in sales of With Wellington last summer. At the end of May it was the third best selling book about the Peninsular War on the website of one of Britain's biggest booksellers and Number Eighteen in the table for all Napoleonic books.  Last December's  sales surge turned out to be a combination of the venerable Scots Magazine declaring it Book of the Month in its January 2015 edition and a highly favourable review in the Napoleonic Association's newsletter. Scots Magazine's reviewer, nature writer and author, Jim Crumley, declared "I don't much care for military memoirs, but I could not put this one down". Other reviewers have been equally enthusiastic - "If you are interested in the memoirs of British soldiers in the Napoleonic Wars this book is a MUST!... You don't get many Napoleonic memoirs as good as this" and "It is the most candid memoir of the British Army I have ever read... does not pull any punches ... highly entertaining, but also thought provoking..." To have a look at the full reviews check out more about With Wellington  

What do you think? Please feel free to Comment 

Wrong Way Around
Decades ago I was lumbered with editing a weekly paper's sports pages. These pages often rely on match reports submitted by one of the teams involved, most often the home side. You won't be surprised to learn that the quality of the reports submitted varied a lot. Some, quite frankly, were terrible.  But if the paper wanted to have coverage of all matches in the area, they all had to used. In a somewhat perfect world every match report would be the same length. But in a big scoring game the last thing that's needed is a line such as "And then we scored six more goals taking United's total tally to 22"  to avoid exceeding the word limit. So, some editing was required. Often the worst written match reports were the toughest to edit because they barely made even sense as originally submitted and it wasn't always possible to get a hold of the contributor to clarify matters. I had one contributor who was especially awful and could not be safely edited. I also had a couple of contributors who were excellent and their copy a joy to edit. This really bad contributor was talking to one of the excellent ones. The awful one announced that his contributions were so good they were never edited. The better writer was frequently edited, because she safely could be, and naturally entertained hurt feelings because the implication was that her contributions were regarded as of inferior quality. I can't remember how I got out of that one, but I'm pretty sure I didn't tell her that the other contributor was one of the worst we had.