Tuesday, 28 February 2012

WW1 British Tanks Part 3


William Tritton

                                                                  Walter Wilson

          As I have mention in a early post William Tritton & Walter Wilson designed Little Willie Thurs gave birth to Tanks.

over the years the tanks got called Mother but to be honest there was Little Willie the prototype then Mother which was use for demonstration the first  on the 29 January 1916 in the grounds of Hatfield House.
It tackle Trenches shell holes etc and then repeated the feat again four days later in front Field Marshal Kitchener. (Who Called mother a pretty Mechanical Toy) Ten Days later the army council ordered 100 tanks the first tanks were mark 1s  Mother never survived as the mark 1s took over.

The Reason I have a big interest in Tanks is because my Grandad Drove a Mark 5 in WW1.

                                                           My Grandad at 16yrs 4 months

My Grandad was 16yrs and 4 months when he enlisted in the 7th Royal Fusiliers at Finsbury Barracks.
30/10/15 Transferred to the Machine Gun Corp
23/01/16 Sent to France with the 60th coy. M.G.C. attached to 60th Brigade 20th Division came back to England on the 20/12/16
15/02/17 Transferred to Army Catering Corps  Swindon
01/03/17  Transferred to 64th Highland Div. Norwich
26/1917   Transferred to Sherwood Rangers
06/01/18 Transferred to the Tank Corp Wareham.

                                               My Grandad Tank Mark 5 Female

                                                             My Grandad at age 21

28mm Resin Model Female Mark 5

                                              28mm Resins Model Female Mark 5 rear view 

                                               28mm Resin Model Female mark 5 Front view 

I put this Model together and The Angry lurker painted it for me the next few picture are model I did
manage to paint myself  I Know very rare I trusted myself to paint.

                                                 28mm Resin mark 5 Resin Model

The Tank was painted by me but the figures etc was painted by The Angry Lurker

                                                        Same Tank Front View



Sunday, 26 February 2012

WW1 British Tanks Part 2

Part 2
The full size wooden model of Wilson Design which showed the tracks going round the whole body was sent to London for the war office to look at Wembley Park. No one knows what the Tank look like as there is no photos this all took place in September 1915.

The official trials took place at Hatfield park in Hertfordshire in January 1916. The mark 1 was called Big Willie but over the years its got known as Mother.

Big Willie (Mother)

This picture is of Mother at the Somme 25 September 1916 the net on top was an anti grenade net.

Here are some Models I have made of Big Willie (Mother) I got them online from Lou Stener
they are1/35 scale resin

                                                      Mark 1 (Mother Male tank)

                                                     The rear

                                                                The Front

                                             Mark 1(Mother female)

                                                            The Rear

The Front

Mother had a crew of eight men. They were still called Land-ships the term Tank came about as a operation name so the Germans wouldnt know, we made out they were Water Tanks hence the name Tank.
the male Tank had  6 PDR Sponsons the female had Hotchkiss machine guns.
I had made the models myself had some help painting them from a very good friend of mine the Angry-lurker
I will post more up about these tanks and why I am so interested in them 

WW1 British Tanks Part 1

The project  was an  Admiralty scheme inspired by the first Lord Winston Churchill, with the creation of the Landship Committee in February 1915 (Land-ships was the name used before the word Tank).

The idea of Caterpillar Tracks came from America as they were used on farming tractors. The Company that
supplied the first tracks system was from the Bullock Creeping Grip Tractor of Chicago. the tracks arrived
at Liverpool Docks on August 1915 and then sent on to the city of Lincoln.to a Company called
William Foster & Company of Lincoln. The managing director was William Tritton and his colleague Walter Wilson a Naval officer with a engineering background sent by the Admiralty to co-operate and oversee the work on behalf  of the Admiralty.

Within six months the team had a crude prototype called the Lincoln machine it was powered by Daimler engines Daimler was already being used by the Royal marine Artillery for there Tractors supplied By Tritton.

The Lincoln Machine Prototype

The tracks proved a problem because they were extended they were hard to steer and they were not very robust.
A army officer Colonel Ernest Swinton (Royal Engineer) was sent on behalf of the War office, The Colonel was depressed by the poor performance Tritton and Wilson sensed this and took the Colonel to a shed where a mock up design was. The problem was the tracks so Tritton & Wilson went on a mad one on inventions and Tritton came up with the final track design and was announce on the 22 September 1915.

The new track design was rapidly fitted to the Lincoln machine and was then called Little Willie.which was still the prototype

Little Willie