British Infantry

Atlantic 1:72 Scale Figure Review

British Infantry, 1:72 Atlantic 1564.

Atlantic »Royal Fusiliers« appear to be early-war British infantry toy soldiers. The figures are actively fighting, but with the exception of the officer, not a single one of them is actually wearing anything close to Combat Order equipment.


Figures in 11 Poses – 24 mm equal 173 cm Height

  • Officer in Service Cap, with Webley Service Revolver
  • NCO with Thompson SMG, standing, firing
  • NCO with Thompson SMG, running
  • NCO with Thompson SMG, throwing Hand Grenade
  • Bren No. 1 with open hands, prone
    • Bren light machine gun
  • Fusilier with Rifle, running
  • Fusilier with Rifle, standing, firing
  • Fusilier with Rifle, kneeling, firing
  • Fusilier with Rifle, crawling
  • Fusilier with open hands, one-man carry
  • Fusilier Casualty being one-man-carried


When Atlantic released this set of British Infantry in 1975, the industry standard for 1:7x scale miniatures had already been well established by Almark WD1 »British Infantry«, Almark WD2 »British Infantry Weapons«, and Airfix 01703 British Infantry, the 1973 upgrade of Airfix 1703 »Infantry Combat Group«. Considering the sculpting quality of these earlier British Infantry sets, it is all the more surprising that Atlantic opted for more toy-like figures, but which included small parts not suitable for children, and required enough assembly to frustrate even the motorically adept.

The figures are wearing British Battledress, Mk.1 or Mk.2 Brodie helmets without camouflage netting, and 1937 Pattern Web Equipment in Skeleton Order, consisting of Waistbelt, Braces, and two Basic Pouches. While Skeleton Order was used for parades, drill, and duties under arms, these figures are clearly fighting and should be in Combat Order or Fighting Order. The Basic Pouches Mk.1 are 9.5″ tall, 5″ wide, and 2.75″ deep, or the equivalent of 3.4 × 1.8 × 1 mm in 1:72 scale. Atlantic decided to make their Basic Pouches so tiny – 2.6 × 1.3 × 0.7 mm – that the mistake is apparent at first glance.

While the officer figure is quite a nice pose, he is wearing even smaller basic Basic Pouches than his men. Perhaps these can be cut down to look more like the Compass Pouch and Pistol Ammunition Pouch the officer actually should be equipped with. The officer‘s map case is there, but Atlantic placed it on the wrong hip, of course.

British Infantry, 1:72 Atlantic 1564.

The two figures involved in the one-man carry casualty evacuation are quite difficult to assemble, and the resulting pose is rather unrealistic. In fact, the casualty looks well and lively, he might be used as a vehicle driver or passenger figure.

The sculptor must have realized that nobody had done British fusilier-pistoleros before, so eight of the ten »Royal Fusiliers« got pistols, only two were shorted. As a consolation price, one of them, the standing, firing fusilier got a 15″ machete, instead of the 21¾″ sword bayonet or 10″ spike bayonet he might have otherwise been issued.

British Infantry, 1:72 Atlantic 1564.

The separate Bren gun in this set is best used to equip a Universal Carrier or Commando Jeep. The dazed Bren gunner does not seem to have much use for it anyway, he is staring into the ground below him, possibly contemplating the number of push-ups he still has ahead of him.

British Infantry, 1:72 Atlantic 1564.

While the officer figure and two or three of the fusilier poses may be worth upgrading and painting, many of the Atlantic »Royal Fusiliers« are best converted to casualty markers for wargames.

Historical Employment

  • British Infantry, 1941–1945

Atlantic »Royal Fusiliers« are a good source of spare Bren guns, Pistol Carriers, Thompson submachine guns, and heads with Brodie helmets needed for conversion projects. The officer figure and the standing NCO are actually good enough sculpts to upgrade, paint and transfer to a British Infantry platoon or company made by another manufacturer.

British Miniatures of World War Two