Way back when this film was first announced and Peter Jackson gave his first interviews on the subject, he mentioned that a Wellington knitting club was making the chainmail that the background extras would wear. Once sprayed with metallic spray, it would look great from a distance…at the time I thought that was pretty inventive.

A while ago I was talking to somebody in a pub who rather demanded attention, given that he was leaning on a sword that was longer than I am tall. He and his mates had gone in to an electroplating workshop here to get their armour done and there they saw racks and racks of plastic armour.

The guys at the workshop admitted it was for Lord of the Rings, and that they were going to chrome it. It would be worn by the extras in the background. My informants scoffed at the notion of plastic armour but had to admit that it looked very good and would certainly pass muster from a distance. It was made in India, according to one person I asked.