Despite the stigma, history is in fact, very interesting. (Your teacher just didn’t know how to present it in a way that would catch your attention and keep you wanting to know more!) It is, after all, the study of our past – everything that led to where we are now. Unfortunately, textbook information can only engage us so much. That’s why history enthusiasts tend to pursue more creative and interactive ways of learning and presenting pivotal moments in our history. Take Andy Belsey for example. He builds highly detailed models of the WWI Trench Warfare.
In case you need a refresher, World War I (dubbed “The Great War”) happened in 1914. The fight between the Central Powers and the Allied Powers went on until it ended in 1918 with over 16 million lives lost. This staggering number of casualties was caused not only by new military technology at the time but also by trench warfare. Belsey’s interest in recreating WWI models stems from his family’s connection to the ‘Great War’.
“My WW1 interest started with my collection of family memorabilia from the period. My Grandparents and their siblings were just ordinary people caught up in the global conflict.”
“My paternal Grandfather had emigrated to Canada and only returned to look after his younger brother. They served in the Royal Garrison Artillery together. While back in England, he met my Grandmother, so I am a result of the Great War. If it hadn’t happened, I wouldn’t exist!”
Andy Belsey builds extremely detailed WWI Trench Warfare models
“I’ve been making models since my childhood,” Andy shares. Somewhere along the line, he learned that he could turn his hobby into his career. And that’s exactly what he did. Andy began making models professionally in 1981.
He went on to build for many of London’s top modelmakers. But it wasn’t until he started sharing his work on the internet that he got the acclaim his work so richly deserved. His uploads, specifically his WWI models, were frequently featured on Reddit’s Front Page and other social media networks.
“People find my 3D explanations of WWI trench warfare very helpful and while the centenaries of the conflict are upon us there is more in it. My online blogs on Military Modelling, explaining how I construct my models, became very popular but the Forum ceased to exist in early 2018.”
Andy’s models show every detail of a WWI trench – from the defensive exterior to the protective interior. Andy uses a variety of materials to create his meticulously intricate models. He has truly triumphed at capturing the gritty appearance of the soldiers in the trenches!
His 10 1:32 scale WWI models are inspired by the trenches of the Germans, British and the French. Each model is carefully labelled to show observers the details of the trench construction. Andy was more than happy to discuss the finer details behind the scenes of his stunningly realistic creations.
This master military model maker has a keen eye for detail
This specialist does not scrimp on the details
Can you believe that the soldiers featured on his WWI trench models start out blank
The models look extremely realistic
A book containing all the tutorial material to make your own WWI trench models will be out soon
After the forum’s deletion, Andy set up his own website. However, to the bewilderment of his followers, the tutorials were missing from the site. This is because Andy will be releasing a book containing all his model tutorials. Andy announced that we can expect his book by May 2021. This compilation of tutorials is sure to be a must-have in the model-making community! But if you’ve got a burning question that you have to ask Andy about model-building, you can reach out to him via email.