The White Hart

Last week, I had to take a trip to Nottingham to take some photos for the next issue of the magazine. I’d asked an old friend, James Morris, if I could stay over at his place, as driving back from a full day of work would have been a bit much. Thankfully, he was happy to see me (phew!) and suggested that we attend his local gaming club at the White Hart. As I was up in Nottingham, it’d only be polite to pop in and see what was going on.

The White Hart is a pub in Lenton, Nottingham, quite close to Games Workshop HQ. Up until a few years ago, the group of gamers met at Warhammer World but a “policy change” at GW forced them to move to their current venue. The gamers now meet upstairs in the function room every Thursday night. With good food and drink on tap, a warm room with good lighting (the lights have been recently upgraded), it makes an excellent venue for the club.

When I arrived, there was a score of gamers either playing or watching games. There were two games of Of Gods and Mortals, one big Black Powder game with several players (played on the smallest table ever!), and James’ excellent Keren game (which will be the one to see at Salute 2014). The rules James chose were I Aint Been Shot Mum (IABSM) .

I was invited to take part in the Keren game and so enthusiastically took on the role of the attacking Italians against the British. The particular battle we were playing was the Italian counterattack on Cameron ridge in the early part of the battle. I played Colonel Corsi, leading the Second Battalion Savoia Grenadiers. It was a very strange battle due to the terrain, as we were fighting across a mountain side. My Colonel led his brave Grenadiers sweeping the British before them! All right, it was a hard slog and the Italians took plenty of casualties. In the closing segments of the game, Corsi led a desperate charge against the pinned British forces, driving them from the mountain, but not before being mortally wounded. (Historically the Colonel survived the assault and was actually captured in his dugout at the end of March by British troops in a surprise advance.)

Of Gods and Mortals was going down a storm, with even Cthulhu making an appearance (from the Reaper Bones range). Plenty of Godlike Clash of Titans-action and plenty of spectators watching the games unfold. Of particular interest was the customisation of the armies and the variety of miniatures used. Seeing a Cthulhu-themed army was really cool.

The Black Powder game was also very interesting, given the size of table they were playing on. Standard unit sizes were halved with 6 cavalry and 12 to 16 infantry representing a unit. This enabled them to play a pretty fast paced game on a small table (just less than 6’x4’) .

Every club has its own atmosphere. I found the gamers at the White Hart both friendly and open, much like my local clubs. I’ll have to time future trips to Nottingham with Thursday nights in future.

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