Article on Tank 785

The Daily Mail recently posted an article on the WWI era Mark II tank identified at tank 785.  This tank currently resides at the Tank Museum at Bovington.  According to the article, this tank was unwittingly sent into combat despite being built not out of armor plate but of untreated steel, leaving it vulnerable to rifle fire.

3FCD142B00000578-4462368-image-m-57_1493637716986British tank crews unwittingly went into the first ever major tank battle in vulnerable unarmoured vehicles, historians have revealed 100 years after the event.  Researchers have found that the 45 Mark II tanks that went into action at the Battle of Arras in May 1917 were training vehicles which had no armour.  Experts believe the crews were not informed the steel the tanks were made from was untreated and therefore could be penetrated by rifle fire.  The weakness of the vehicles actually ended up helping the British war effort after one was captured by the Germans, who then abandoned plans to develop more advanced armour-piercing weapons.  But it was actually mechanical issues that proved the most costly, with just 11 of the tanks eventually crossing No Man’s Land due to breakdowns.

Read the full Daily Mail piece here

 

Tiger Day at Bovington Tank Museum

The Daily Echo has posted a story and photo gallery of this weekends Tiger Day event at the Tank Museum at Bovington UK.

290417purTigerday08.jpg.galleryTHOUSANDS of people visited The Tank Museum today for an event which included two restored World War Two tanks which featured in Brad Pitt’s blockbuster movie ‘Fury’.

Around 4,500 people visited the museum in Bovington, for a day dedicated to Tiger 131, the only running Tiger 1 in the world.

Tiger 131 runs only twice a year, at Tiger Day in April and again on Tiger Day in September, and always attracts huge crowds when it does.

And this was the first Tiger Day event where tickets have all sold out before the day itself.

Visitors were treated to a day of talks and tours on the subject of Tiger and its Second World War contemporaries, as well as an opportunity to see rare objects from the Museum archives relating to the capture of the German tank.

One of the highlights was the chance to see Tiger take to the arena alongside its ‘Fury’ co-star, the Sherman tank, with other contemporaries like the British Matilda I and Comet.

Read full article and picture gallery here.

The Tiger Collection video from Bovington Tank Museum

Here is a short video showing off the new “Tiger Collection” Exhibition at the Bovington Tank Museum.

The Tank Museum: Tank 100

t100-main-logo-1It’s been a few months since we visited the Tank Museums Tank 100 website, celebrating 100 years since the first use of tanks in 1916. There is quite a bit of interesting new content there, including more installments of the Tank Men series looking at WWI British tank crewmen and Training and Combat section.  Quite a few of the posts are written by Tank Museum researcher and prolific author David Fletcher.  We have provided some links to some of posts written by Fletcher below.  This is not a complete list and we highly recommend that people spend some time browsing the content at the Tank 100 site, it’s well worth the time.

Recruiting for the Heavy Section – Mr. Fletcher describes the formation of the first tank units

Part I – Lieutenant-Colonel Ernest Swinton was one of the leading men in the development of the Tank Corps, going on to recruit hundreds of tank men who served in the First World War. Read his story in the first of a three part series on the creation of the Heavy Section of the Royal Machine-Gun Corps.

Part 2 – It can’t be easy recruiting for a new branch of the Army, especially if you’re not supposed to say in the first place exactly what it does. This seems to have been the main problem in the early days facing Lieutenant-Colonel Ernest Swinton, Royal Engineers, when he tried to recruit men for the new war machines, the ‘tanks’.

Part 3 – Part 3 goes into more detail regarding exactly how Swinton, first commander of the Heavy Section, managed to swell the numbers up to 184 officers and 1610 men of other ranks.

 

A Tank in Your Town – A list of some of the WWI British tanks that survived the war

Ypres – Ypres, in Belgium, on the edge of the Salient of evil memory, is another location that acquired a tank, selecting one from those about to be destroyed at the end of the war which had significant local associations.

Tonbridge – It would be nice to say that I remembered the Tonbridge tank but it was long gone by the time I was there, I knew the Castle well enough, and the river Medway that runs by it, but the tank was scrapped in 1938, even before I was born.

Barnsley – Barnsley, in Yorkshire, received its tank on 27 June 1919. It was delivered to the goods yard and driven from there by a Tank Corps crew, to a temporary resting place in the town centre, two weeks later the men returned and drove the tank to its permanent site in Locke Park where it was displayed along with a German 77mm field gun.

Aberdeen – Scotland ran its own National War Savings Scheme and since we don’t have their version of the Silver Bullet we don’t yet know how many tanks were distributed. We can only rely on postcards, such as the one above from Aberdeen, but we’re slowly building up a picture.

Colchester – At Colchester, in Essex, the gifted tank was set up on a plinth alongside the ancient castle walls. It was a Mark IV female although its number is not recorded. However we do know that it sported unditching beam rails and the white/red/white markings which indicate that it served in France and was not a mere training machine from Bovington.

 

Toward the Tank – The first 8 of a 12 part series looking at the predecessors of the tank over the centuries.

Part 1: Chariots of Iron

Part 2: The Armoured Knight

Part 3, Scottish War Cart

Part 4: Valturio’s War Chariot

Part 5: Leonardo Da Vinci

Part 6: Steven’s Landship 1599

Part 7: Holzschuher 1558

Part 8: Siege Engines

 

Tanks in the Middle East – A very interesting series of articles about the little known use of WWI armor in Palestine and Egypt.

Tanks in Palestine in the First World War

Palestine Tank Detachment

Mark I & Mark II Tanks in Gaza

 

 

Video: Elefant Tank Arrives For New Exhibition at Bovington Tank Museum

Seventy-two years after it fell into Allied hands, one of the largest combat vehicles to see action in the Second World War arrived safely at The Tank Museum in Dorset.

An Unofficial High-Speed Tour of The Tank Museum, Bovington, Part 3.

Nicholas “the Chieftain” Moran of World of Tanks conducts the third and final part of his high-speed tour of the Tank Museum at Bovington.  This part of the tour covers the vehicles in the non-public vehicle conservation center.

Inside the Tanks: The Centurion

Wargaming Europe has released a new video featuring Richard “The Challenger” Cutland and his team at Bovington Tank Museum where they take a closer look at the British Centurion Tank.