I was recently contacted by Robbie Rodiss after he’d posted an article on Steve Hezzlewood’s designs on The Independent Wargames Group blog asking whether any of his designs were still available?
I was going to email Robbie back, but decided the best way to respond was to write my own blog response.
Early Days – Pax Brittanica
The original Pax Britannica ranges in both 20mm and old 30mm (more akin to modern 28mm) designed by Steve in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s were sold to Rusty Scabbard Miniatures (RSM) in the mid to late 1980’s and are still available (in the US at least) from The Daytona Painting Consortium.
This included the full range of American Civil War, Napoleonics and Colonial Wars in 20mm and the fabulous Seven Years War and American War of Independence ranges in 28mm (30mm).
Of course, once Steve had sold his entire business to RSM he didn’t stop designing, producing some amazing one off’s before a wargaming friend introduced him to English Civil War gaming, at which point the start of a new range of miniatures was designed for Steve’s new found interest in the English Civil War.
Steve designed a Musketeer and Pikeman marching, a Dismounted Dragoon making ready as well as a selection of command figures and a drummer for the infantry. He also designed a beautiful set of personalities including King Charles I, Prince Rupert and Oliver Cromwell.
Unfortunately, shortly after the initial launch of this limited range under the “Echelon Designs” brand, Steve’s personal life took a turn for the worse and he ended up having to step away from the business and the hobby.
Pax Britannica Reboot
A few years later, Steve again looked to re-enter the hobby, with a plan to re-launch Pax Britannica with a new range of American Civil War figures in 28mm.
The range here included infantry in frock coats and kepis or slouch hats in a rage of poses – right shoulder shift, advancing, advancing at the port, standing firing and kneeling firing. It also included a selection of officers, a drummer boy, a mounted colonel and a casualty figure.
Just as this was getting started Steve’s personal life again took over from his business obligations, leaving many customers disappointed yet again. And the new found venture stalled once more.
Incidentally, work at this time also included the start of a range of 28mm Napoleonics designed by Steve and Lee Hezzlewood which were never released.
Steve Hezzlewood sadly passed away in 1996 at the age of 45, leaving a legacy of beautifully designed figures which, unfortunately, were overshadowed by personal issues that meant they never quite achieved the recognition they deserved.
Having had unique access to Steve, his design work and some of the sculpts he had completed shortly before his untimely demise, I can honestly (if somewhat biasedly) say that he is still unrivaled to this day.
I did look at relaunching Steve’s figures, at least the ACW and ECW ranges last year (2016), but unfortunately the master molds I still had dried out too much to remain viable. I do however have a selection of master castings, so if there is demand I may look at using these to produce a limited set of production molds to once again offer Steve’s fine miniatures on the market.
Please reply to this post with your memories of Steve’s figures and let me know if you’d like to see them available once more?