A discursive look at Napoleonic & ECW wargaming, plus a load of old Hooptedoodle on this & that

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Solo Campaign - Week 7

In short supply in Wellington's army
[Hard-tack biscuit, in Army (L) and Navy (R) styles]

After all the fighting last week, this has been mostly a week of rest for the French, and of marching on very short rations for Wellington's force heading towards Lugo.

Week 07

Random Events
Nothing new. There will be some mutterings in the British Parliament, but nothing official.  

The 3D3 activation throws give Allies 7, French 7 – since French had initiative in last week, they continue to have it – they choose to allow Allies to move first.


Allies (7 allowed)
1 – A (Wellington) completes retreat over rough roads to Lugo after defeat at Benavente. This requires a test:
2D3 = 4 +3 (Wellington’s rating -1 (army is tired) -1 (winter conditions) -1 (brown road) = 4    - this result means that the army completes the march but is Tired  - since the Army is already Tired it becomes Demoralised (see below)...
2 – having marched away from his supply route through Zamora, Wellington is now Out of Supply. One Order this week is to arrange for the Navy to ship supplies to Vigo....
3 – ...and one is for a new Supply Base to be set up at Vigo. [It will be 2 weeks – Week 09 – before supplies start to arrive by this route. This means that Force A will be Out of Supply in Week 8 also, and since this is the second such week, the Group will be Demoralised again next week.
4 – Sp B (Espana) marches from Salamanca to Zamora
5 – Similarly Ang-Port E (Cotton) makes the same march
6 – Sp D (Maceta, at Avila) rests
 [Intelligence step –
  • Nothing new – no scouting orders]
French (7 allowed)
1 – N (Marmont) holds position at Leon, allowing Tired troops to recover
2 – L (Montfort’s brigade, at Talavera) marches 1 step to Caceres...
3 – ...and Group L is joined to K, at Caceres, all under Maucune.
4 – S (Jourdan, at Madrid) rests – thus Neuenstein’s brigade recovers.
[Intelligence step -
  • No scouting orders]

Supplies and Demoralisation
Anglo-Portuguese Group A (Wellington, at Lugo) is Out of Supply until Week 09. This will cause Demoralisation next week, but the force is Demoralised this week already because of rough retreat after Benavente.
Demoralisation tests result in a further block/base being lost to sickness and desertion for the following units:
1/Coldstream Gds, 1/79th Ft, 1/88th Ft, Combined Lt Coys of Wallace’s Bde, 2/83rd Ft, 2/9th Ptgse, 1/21st Ptgse, 2/21st Ptgse, 11th LD, 14th LD, 16th LD, 1st Dgns KGL, 2nd Dgns KGL, and Gardiner’s battery RA abandoned their remaining guns.
Wellington’s force thus lost a further 1500 infantry, 550 cavalry and 2 guns on the retreat, and demoralisation will continue next week..


Wellington’s defeated force suffered further during the retreat over the poor roads to Lugo. The cavalry and the artillery did particularly badly – many horses lost – and desertion, sickness and men becoming separated from their units and falling behind resulted in a further 2050 men lost in total. Gardiner’s battery, attached to the First Divn, were already in poor shape after Benavente, and had to abandon their 2 remaining guns on the road. Third Divn is temporarily commanded by Col. Wallace of the 88th Foot in Picton’s absence – Picton has a shell splinter in his shoulder, and is expected to be fit in a few weeks. Portuguese brigade in the Third Divn and KGL brigade in the First Divn are now very much reduced in strength.

The commands of Espana (Spanish troops) and Cotton (Anglo-Portuguese 6th Divn + much of the cavalry) marched from Salamance to Zamora, the intention being to support Wellington at Lugo.

Wellington’s force is temporarily Out of Supply, and the Navy has been ordered to ship supplies to Vigo, which becomes new Supply Base. Wellington will not receive supplies by this new arrangement until Week 9, so will continue to be Demoralised next week.

French army mostly recovering from previous exertions, though Maucune’s Divn at Caceres has called in its detached brigade and is now combined to full strength.


  1. Re. Hard Tack....I see no worms (and I don't have an eye-patch!) ;-)

  2. Worms is extra, sir.

    In Hornblower, there's a good bit where they are showing the Tsar life on a ship, and one of the officers taps his biscuit on the table, so the worms crawl out. The Tsar gracefully declines to have a biscuit, but is very taken with the pea soup.

    If it's a choice between having bread with worms or no bread at all, I guess that with worms is the lesser of two weevils. (Ksshh - I thank you).

  3. The hard tack looks tasty??? And I did chuckle at your little jape, although you probably didn't deserve it!! What happened to your namesake, wounded in the last battle??

    1. Ah yes - well spotted - that was supposed to be in the report. General de Division Maximilien Sebastien, Comte Foy, is at present indisposed as a result of some Portuguese chap sticking a bayonet in his leg. He has a note from le Medecin, and is excused walking-about duties for a month or so. He is required to drink a bottle of warm rioja each day until it feels better. In the meantime, his Division of the Armee de Portugal is being looked after by Gen de Bde Jean, Baron Chemineau, and Chemineau's own brigade is temporarily commanded by Col Molard, of the 6eme Leger. In Molard's absence, the 6eme Leger is under the command of the senior Chef de Bataillon, Maurice Jaune, and so it goes on down until we reach Jean-Claude the potato-peeler in Company F, who is temporarily replaced by the regimental mascot, a goat named Becassine.

      There's a lot of upward mobility in the Armee de Portugal - a marshal's baton in every knapsack.