I decided to do a post about those figures.
The current company has a website here:
From their website:
|"Little Lead Soldiers Ltd was set up in 1983 by sculptor Peter Davis. After visiting Houghton Hall, the Norfolk home of the Marquess of Cholmondeley, which boasts one of the most extensive toy soldier collections in the world, Peter was inspired to produce his own range of toy soldiers.|
|The company was first based in the Cambridgeshire village of Madingley. Originally we bought in castings and painted them to a collectors standard. It soon became clear that there was demand for quality metal figures other than soldiers, so we started manufacturing our own figures and accessories. This resulted in a most exceptional growth for the company and led to some exciting projects, which required the|
|company to move to larger premises, in the nearby village of Over, in 1985. Little Lead Soldiers continued to expand, taking over more units on the industrial estate. We were able to acquire the moulds of Greenwood & Ball’s museum range of ½”, 1” and 2” figures. This led to the|
|company producing over six thousand figures for the six battle dioramas used in the James Bond film “The Living Daylights”."|
These are figures meant for display, and they are rather pricey for wargames.
But years ago you could find bags of them in some hobby stores.
The figures were sold as 25mm, but they were pretty close to modern 1/72. Here's a comparison photo of some common figures:
They are made of a lead alloy and are supplied with a separate base and separate accessories. The figures are meant to be bent into poses and soldered or glued in place.
There was a small paper insert in each bag with some information:
The company suggests you buy their soldering kit to assemble the soldiers.
From my own small experience, I have to say that these figures are best if they are left in standing poses, as you can snap off arms quite easily. Also the accessories are not always complete in the bags. This might be more of a reflection on the age of the bagged toys and possible loss through holes in the plastic. Also there is a complete lack of drums and musical instruments, so you have to make your own buglers and drummers.
I personally discard the bases.
I'm no electrician and I've soldered feet into lumps. Glue is best. Either superglue or epoxy or hot glue. I also found that plasticene around the base as "grass" does help secure the figures. Over all, they aren't really wargame figures. The accessories can easily snap off and they will pop off the bases unless they are thick. I hate to be down on these figures, they are unique and do have their own charm, but they are more diorama figures in my opinion.
A typical set is MRM1 - Crecy Knights. Here's what you would get:
In the Ancients era there were 5 sets; MRA1-Egyptians; MRA2-Greeks; MRA3-Romans; MRA4-Persians; MRA5-Goths.
I only have a set of British Artillery.
American Civil War has only two infantry sets, MRC1-Unon Troops; and MRC2-Confederates. The Union soldiers have a few zouave figures included.
The English soldiers make great figures for the Revolution or the Seven Years War. The long leggetty riders can be seen in this picture.
The English Civil War has 2 sets of foot soldiers with a couple of horsemen in each pack; MREC1-Roundheads; MREC2-Royalists.
The First World War has early war soldiers; MRWB1-British (Tommies); and MRWG1-Germans.
This company also made several battle sets that had a large box containing a vacu-form base, and around 60 figures or four bags.
Here's a set I have, it's incomplete and is of the Battle of Waterloo (edit-I've got to redo the pictures-please stand by!)
Inside the vac form base is pretty impressive, the sunken road at Waterloo:
Also included was a double sided hand out:
It came with four sets of figures. English foot Guards, a bag of artillery (RHA) and two French bags, The Old Guard Grenadiers and Cuirassiers. It also included a tree (presumably Wellington's tree). I picked this up on ebay and am not entirely sure of the contents.
However I did find a pictutre on the net of the Gettysburg set:
As for what got me started on this topic, I can say that the figures in the 1965 Time Life book may have been made by the same man who made these figures, but the Little Lead Soldier Company has only been in official business since 1983.