Tritton and his colleague Wilson oversaw the building of what came to be known as the Number One Lincoln Machine.
Construction started on 11 August 1915 in a corner of the factory in Lincoln. The machine was little more than a boiler plate box body fitted with a dummy turret. The wheels were to both help with steering and to make the somewhat top-heavy machine more stable.
The machine moved for the first time, inside the factory, on 8 September 1915 ** and it started trials on the South Common, next to Cross O’Cliff Hill in Lincoln, on 10 September 1915. These trials were not successful because the tracks weren’t up to the job; they were fine for steady use on level ground but on anything more severe they had a tendency to sag and fall off the rollers.
Despite his continuing reservations about tracked vehicles, Tritton was determined to improve the design and he and Wilson spent many late nights in their office in the White Hart Hotel working on a solution.
**B Liddell Hart, The History of the Royal Tank Regiment, p44.