The Inn Crowd!

I originally intended trying to get this building done in February as part of that month’s scenery/terrain challenge, but I decided my Chinese bridge had been more sorely neglected so it got done instead.


This is a 20mm scale model of La Belle Alliance, the inn on the Brussels road that forms part of the Waterloo battlefield.  The model is a laser-cut MDF kit by Sarissa Precision and it’s sat in its wrapper for a couple of years at least.  Having finished off my French cottages in February I thought I might as well keep up momentum with continental buildings and get the inn done.


There’s been a steady rise in availability of laser-cut buildings in recent years – they’re usually relatively inexpensive, go together well and there’s quite a range of buildings available for all periods and geographical locations (you can see Colonel Mustard’s brilliant French chateau here and some WH40K items here).  However, one thing I don’t like about them is that where any angles between walls, roofs etc. are not at 90º then visible gaps appear (although I’m sure this is me being overcritical).  Fortunately, with this model, only the angle of the small offshoot roof and the base of the chimney stacks are affected and not too obvious!


The corners of the walls have interlocking joints, as do the main roof supports and the end wall behind the offshoot.  These fit snugly but, because I know they’re there, I filled them with greenstuff and sanded them down (and found MDF doesn’t sand smooth, but the slightly roughened texture looked OK).  I added small card slates over the roof joints and added some extra ones around the roof to make them look less obvious.  The kit comes with some nice laser-cut card window shutters, but I left these off since the walls looked a bit too “busy” with them in place!  I painted the inn in the same colours as the cottages, with the addition of painted brickwork around the bottom of the walls.  I used a much thinner brown wash on this building too make sure it went into all of the etched detail and then added a final sandy-coloured drybrush to pick out some of the darker colours.


I’m pleased with how it’s turned out!  I don’t tend to have too many larger buildings and this one was just the right size and fits in well with my other buildings.  I haven’t made a base for this one to sit on, since I didn’t think it needed it, but I can always add one in the future if I want to tie it in to some small outbuildings.  The buildings shown form a nice small village for the Franco-Prussian War through to WW2.  Just need to get some more troops and tanks done now to lurk in amongst them, but that’s what April’s community painting challenge will hopefully help with!


  1. Very nicely built and painted John. I have done several Sarissa kits, albeit for a dufferent historical period, and I think they are well made and go together very well. Getting the right looking finish on the MDF is the tough part but you’ve done a great job here. All in all a lovely looking board you have there.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks Dave! I knew you’d used Sarissa buildings and thought quite highly of them. I am actually quite pleased with now having enough of a village to use in games. I’ve got another damaged house and a small factory to go with these, so not a bad amount!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Will! I remembered seeing your chateau and thought it was definitely worth a mention, although I was quite happy to not have to do that much to the inn. And you’re right about the postage, can’t go wrong with that price!

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      • I want to do a Vietnam skirmish game some time and I have my eye on the Sarissa eastern jungle type village. Would look awesome with some added thatch and bamboo additions. But I cannot justify starting that until I have got through the 60 odd WW2 model kits and 100 men I have to build and paint first………

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        • That sounds good! I hate to be a bad influence, but I’ve seen those buildings and they do look very good. I’ve been half tempted to think I should get some for colonial and WW2 Far East. If it makes you feel any better, I recently checked how many WW2 vehicles I have waiting to be painted and it was a lot (at least most are assembled and primed though)!

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    • Thanks Mark! Believe it or not, this is the only MDF building I have so I can’t really offer much in the way of advice (but TIM and Colonel Mustard have used MDF buildings, and Pete S/SP made a very nice rubble-strewn house)! I cut and tidied most of it with a knife and used a very fine file on some of the edges – I should maybe have used really fine emery paper on the greenstuff to avoid it roughing the surface, but it looks OK. I primed it in enamel before finishing in acrylic, so not sure how it takes acrylic paint alone. But I’ve seen enough of your work to be pretty sure you’ll be absolutely fine with it! 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

      • Mark definitely covering the walls in a filler type textured paint or plaster and filling all the gaps is essential. And making your own roof tiles with card board. Plus the Sarissa chimney pots are rubbish. Chop them off. You can buy great metal or plastic replacements.

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      • Well, my barriers turned out ok, but I had a bitch of a time weathering them. I ended up using a lot of weathering powders and they are not too detailed to begin with so I was a bit frustrated. Still, I field-tested my Attack of the Warbots battlefield layout on the mat last night and they will work. I will likely share all that in a post if I can before HAVOC. Turns out I will need 13 boxes, a wagon, the mat, and the game sign just for that game! Making a checklist for it (Saturday night) and my tanks game.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh no ! I should not have read this ,Great buildings mate ,only problem is now I want some especially the ones Colonel Mustard mentioned as I’m working on the Asian theme at the moment ! .

    Liked by 1 person

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