login   |    register
Osprey Publishing [ MORE REVIEWS ] [ WEBSITE ] [ NEW STORIES ]

Book Review
Modelling the Churchill Tank

by: Mark R. Smith [ GUNNY ]


The Churchill tank saw a large amount of action in WWII, from Dieppe to North Africa, and Normandy to the Reich in 1945. Despite critics of the tank, and being touted as slow and outdated in terms of design, the tank proved to be a rugged and completely solid vehicle. This new manual by Osprey Publishing provides a comprehensive guide to modeling the Churchill in 1/35 scale, across a wide range of skill levels.
This manual features build chapters of numerous marks and variants of the Churchill, which include bridge layers, flame throwers (The Crocodile), and customized assault vehicles (such as the AVRE).


Paperback, 80 pp
7.25 x 9.75 inches
252 full color and black and white photos
Written by Mark J. Bannerman


I. Introduction
II. Accessories, Tools, and Materials
III. Churchill Mk. III, 14th (Canadian) Calgary Tank Regiment, Dieppe 1942
IV. Churchill Crocodile, Germany 1945
V. Churchill AVRE with SBG, 79th Armored Division, Normandy 1944
VI. Churchill Mk.V (CS) 6th Guards Tank Brigade, Holland 1945
VII. “Churchill Gallery”, which includes the following projects; Churchill AVRE, 79th Armored Division, Normandy 1944~Churchill NA 75, 21st Army Tank Brigade, Italy 1944~Churchill Mk. Vi 75mmQF, 6th Guards Tank Brigade, Belgium 1944~Churchill III Kingforce Unit, El Alamein 1942~Churchill 3 in. Gun Carrier~Churchill CIRD (18 in.)~Churchill Mk. I (twin howitzers), Tunisia 1943~Churchill Mk.III, 5th Guard Tank Army (USSR)
VIII. Further Reading and Research
IX. Kits and Accessories Available
X. Tips and Tricks, which include backdating the Tamiya offerings, painting and weather order, scratch building an Mk I/II turret.
XI. Index

“This tank, carrying my name, has more drawbacks than me…” Winston Churchill

From the opening lines of this new release from Osprey Publishing, to the closing on the final page, this book is all Churchill, all the time…I sat down and absolutely could not put this one down until I had read and studied every word and picture. As always, Osprey does the title justice, by presenting the subject in an informative and concise manner, with tons of excellent color photos to illustrate the text.
Although I really didn’t know what quite to expect from this volume, with such a diverse and extensive subject to cover in one manual, there is a large amount of education within its 80 pages! If you are a diehard Churchill fanatic or a non-seasoned newbie, this book will be equally useful.
The author (Mark J. Bannerman), covers the history of the Churchill quite well, and then moves into explaining his methods of representing the various versions of the Churchill in miniature. Each of the build chapters offer new and exciting techniques to achieve more realism from your subject, in an easy to read step-by-step style. The projects contained are geared from the intermediate modeler, to the advanced, and then master modeler, as some are very extensive and detailed scratch build projects, and also some extremely interesting paint/finish techniques used by the author. Each chapter of this volume teaches the reader not only about the Churchill itself, but also how to create the tank in complete realism.

Inside the book

If you’re familiar with Osprey Publishing’s Modelling Series, you will recognize the format, as this manual follows suit to its predecessors. The book opens up with an interesting and informative introduction with a brief history of the Churchill, and a complete listing of Churchill variants complete with wonderful color photos.
We then move into the section that covers the author’s favorite and “essential” tools and materials that are used in the build projects, which of course begin next.
Four total build project chapters are here, one by one, and each one begins with a breakdown of the model project in detail, and then takes you through construction, painting, finishing, and display of your model. The fourth build chapter, “Churchill Mk. V (CS), 6th Guard Tank Brigade, Holland, includes a diorama build in the project, with very good information, tips, and techniques for figures and building construction as well as armor!
We then go into the “Churchill Gallery”, which is a chapter containing 8 more build projects covered a little more briefly than the build chapters themselves, but there is enough information and color photos of each project to be useful in the recreation of the variants.
Chapter 8, “Further Reading and Research”, contains some very good sample titles of Churchill research books, and also some website listings. Also, a complete listing in chart style format, of Churchill kit manufacturers, scale, and type and part numbers of the kits available will be found here.
I personally found the final chapter of this manual to be quite interesting, entitled simply “Tips and Tricks”, and although it contains only a few pages, there is some excellent stuff here! Broken down into three separate sections, the author first covers techniques to backdate the Tamiya kits to earlier Churchill’s for increased accuracy. Then into a painting and weathering tutorial, in a numbered step-by-step procedure of the authors weathering techniques…awesome! Wrapping up this chapter is a photo procession that takes you through the steps of scratch building your own Mk I/II turret. And of course we have the always informative and useful full color, color chart in the rear of the volume, with a detailed description of each color and the usage of each.


First off, I’ve got to say that this is one of the most interesting and concise collection of Churchill projects that I’ve seen in such a small package, respectively, as the variants range from the basic tank to the AVRE with SBG (Standard Box Girder) bridge layer tank. The authors modeling talents are superb, and his text is informative and easy to understand. Although some of these projects are quite extensive and detailed, modelers of all stages of experience will gain from this writing. Not just for Churchill fans, as the techniques on these pages could be out to use on many other modeling projects. A definite must have from this modeler’s point of view, very highly recommended for any and all treadheads alike!

Many thanks to Sheeba Madan, of Osprey Publications, New York, for providing this fantastic early review sample.

Keep Modeling!

Let’s take a first look at one of Osprey Publications hot new additions to their growing line of Modeling Manuals, #21, “Modelling the Churchill Tank”
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: 1841768693
  Suggested Retail: $15.95 U.S
  Related Link: Osprey Publishing Official Web Page
  PUBLISHED: Aug 18, 2005
  NATIONALITY: United States

About Mark R. Smith (Gunny)

I have been building models of all sorts all of my life, concentrating mainly on the coolest one's when I was younger, but now I focus directly on all military subjects, from armor to warships. After years of counting rivets, I put away the calipers, dial indicators, and micrometers and now just ha...

Copyright ©2021 text by Mark R. Smith [ GUNNY ]. All rights reserved.


What's Your Opinion?

Click image to enlarge
  • Pic013
  • Pic009
  • Pic008
  • Pic005
  • Pic001
  • Pic003