Thursday 13 July 2023

WW2 Eric Knowles Style - The Belgians

WW2 Belgians - Eric Knowles Style!

Now here is something you are unlikely to see very often. This is the 1940 Belgian part of the WW2 collection of Eric Knowles. As yet I do not have these in my possession so have no clue as to the manufacturer of any of the models and equipment you see. I was rather taken by the armour and so did a little a digging on the subject. As I suspected much of this is Eric’s idea of what the Belgians have had rather than what they actually did! 

The Belgian army of the period is not one that I have much information about so I am unable authenticate any of it - perhaps when I have it ‘in the flesh’ so to speak I will get a better idea. Eric would typically start off with a force that was properly organised and with the correct bits and pieces only to then wander off into varying degrees of feasibility that would inevitably diminish over time - as participants in his WW1 South East Asia naval campaign will attest to!

For all of that his improvisations were usually well reasoned though - they would probably offend the purist but Eric was never one to worry too much about that!


Martin Rapier said...

I remember seeing quite a bit of Belgian stuff for sale at shows a few years back, maybe Brittania did it? The colours and equipment look right, albeit perhaps with a rather higher proportion of armour than the infantry heavy Belgian army had! For Rapid Fire he would have been building battalion sized units though, so fair enough.

Maudlin Jack Tar said...

Looks like an excellent collection regardless of accuracy - especially the big tractor-pulled gun!

Robert (Bob) Cordery said...


This looks like a typical Eric Knowles’ army, with lots of conversions of existing models into something that approximates to a real tank or SP gun. For example, adding turrets from a Lee/Grant tank to the chassis of a 1960s German APC to produce a Belgian tank sort of works.

With its eccentric mixture of vehicles etc., this army would make an ideal imagi-nation army.

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi Martin,

Eric’s WW2 collection will be virgin territory for me unlike his 18th century set up which I remember gaming with back in the 1980s. I am sure there will be plenty more surprises as I open the boxes! I had a quick look at the Wiki for the Belgian armour and there was not a great deal of it and certainly not some of the models Eric created! I checked out the colours and equipment and it looks about right and I do know that he was fond of Britannia figures so they may well be them. I will know more when I have them - along with the 50KG of unpainted kit as well!

Having said that the Belgian have the look of a great fictional set as Bob rightly pointed out.

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi maudlin Jack Tar,

Eric had the uncanny knack of making the unbelievable believable and his conversions and improvisations across all his collections were legendary. It all looks like it belongs!

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi Bob,

I am looking forward to seeing this lot ‘in the flesh’ and I wonder what other surprises he has in store for us! You are absolutely right about an imagi-nation set up - it is an instant army and would only need some aerial assets to be good to go.

I know he used a lot of Roco stuff so I am expecting to see other conversions in the collection.

All the best,