Posting the history of the tank from invention to the end of World War 1.

News will appear 100 years to the day after the events took place, these posts will be augmented by general posts covering the development and use of the tank

Messines 7 June 1917

The Battle of Messines on 7 June 1917 was the first action for the 2nd Tank Brigade which consisted of A and B Battalions of the Heavy Branch, each equipped with thirty-six of the new Mark IV Tanks.  They would operate across the Second Army on a frontage of some 13 kms.  The Second Army’s…

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Battle of Messines

By the end of May 1917, A and B Battalions had received their full complement of 42 of the new Mk IV tanks.  The B Bn history records that they “were received, on the whole, very favourably”. In preparation for the forthcoming battle of Messines, which was planned to start on 7 June 1917, the…

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3rd May 1917 – Annoying Armour Piercing Bullets

On the 3rd May, four Tanks operated with 21st Division, assembling at a position between CROISELLES and St LEGER, from which point they moved to the Sunken Road at N.35.d.4.5.10.  One of these four Tanks failed to reach the starting point, the other three went into action and became heavily engaged with the enemy’s trench…

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Action on 23rd April 2017

On April 23rd, 11 Tanks were employed, two operating against GAVRELLE, three against ROCUX and the Chemical Works, two against MOUNT PLEASANT WOOD and the RAILWAY ARCH at H.18.d.2.1., three North of MONCHY and one South of that village. The work of these Tanks afforded the greatest assistance to the infantry.  Many Machine Guns were…

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11 April 1917

Fifth Army  V Corps 11 Company D Battalion.  11 of the 12 tanks started off at 4.30 a.m. in line at eighty yards interval and about eight hundred yards from the German line.  Four Tanks attacked Bullecourt and 2 attacked the Hindenburg Line to the North West.  Two of the former were knocked out in…

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