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Presentation tank

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Mark Hansen
...Gwyn do you have a photo of the Barnoldswick tank? - the only one I have shows it being dismantled and its too far gone to tell its sex

It might still be possible using your photo depending on exactly how much has been dismantled. I'll give it a go if you can post it.

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KevinBattle

A quick addition:

Trevor Pidgeons book "The Tanks at Flers" contains a photo of "D" Company (see "The Men").

There is a photo of Major Summers in delta's book, but whether that may indicate who the rest are, I can't say. It might be that Captain Mortimore could be near to him, but I'd need experts in rank insignia and uniform to narrow down which are Captains (and whether this is a 1916 photo or later).

He also quotes:

The world's first tank to engage in war was D1, the first tank of D Company of the so-called Heavy Section of the Machine Gun Corps (thus named in order to disguise the unit's true nature). Moving slowly and alone, it left its start point south-east of Delville Wood at 5.15 a.m. on 15 September 1916. Its commander, Capt Harold William Mortimore, had orders to attack the nearby 'Brewery' Salient and clear the German trenches there (Hop, Ale, Beer, Lager, etc) before the main attack began.

In this he succeeded but he then advanced too far and strayed into the British barrage, where a shell put his machine out of action. But Mortimore's place in history is secure, for every tank that has seen action anywhere in the world - British, American, French, German, Russian or any other - must in a sense look to Mortimore's D1 as its direct forebear.

Now, whether that alone is sufficient (or was even appreciated at the time) for a tank to be presented to Chiswick I do not know, but will try and find out!!

Regards, Kevin

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delta

Kevin

I have been e-chatting to David Flecther on another matter and your query came up. He is faily certain that the reason for the tank presentation to Chiswick was not linked to Mortimore nor Ricardo but "something fa more mundane"

The Summer's photo in the Tanks at Flers was taken whilst Summers was in the USA, in 1918, where he met up with the young Ike Eisenhower who was a young tank officer.

Stephen

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Sidearm
It might still be possible using your photo depending on exactly how much has been dismantled. I'll give it a go if you can post it.

OK - let's give it a go. Here's a photo of the Barnoldswick tank from a local website. I reckon the fact this presentation tank has gun barrels must make it a Male. I'd be interested in what others think.

Gwyn

post-20823-1222980179.jpg

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Mark Hansen
OK - let's give it a go. Here's a photo of the Barnoldswick tank from a local website. I reckon the fact this presentation tank has gun barrels must make it a Male. I'd be interested in what others think.

Gwyn

Actually I meant Centurion's dismantled tank photo but, yes, it's a boy.

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centurion

Thats what I needed. For completeness here's the end of the story. Actually looking at it afresh there is enogh sponson left to confirm the maleness. There is an enigmatic comment from a local to the effect that 'there was a mystery about the tank' but what that was who knows.

post-9885-1222984150.jpg

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KevinBattle

Just to dip in on the Barnoldswick tank, would the length of the 6 pounder barrels (long 40 calibre early or short 23 calibre) help narrow down the suspects?

It doesn't seem to have a lengthened "tadpole" tail either, so I assume it is a Mark IV, but that's just my tuppence!! OK, OK, I'll get my coat and leave the experts to it!!!

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KevinBattle

With reference to the family details in "The First Tank Crews", a search in Genes Reunited has thrown up the following information (using Mortimore and Chiswick) as main search criteria) from the 1901 Census:-

Winifred 1889, Chiswick, Middlesex; Harold 1892 (not 1891, however if as hinted by delta, his birth was Oct to Dec 1891, then he may have not been registered until 1892, but thought I should raise the entry in case it has an effect); Irene 1894; Arthur 1896; Percy and a Frederick both 1897 (twins or early & late births same year?); and Gladys 1899. I'm not paid up to Genes Reunited so I haven't developed any further details on these entries. The 1901 Census also records a Cecile as a Dressmaker in Chiswick. I'm not a genealogist, but the surname is fairly unusual, so it could be one family. Apologies if any of this is distracting from real research, but tuppence from me gets you a lot!!

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ian turner

Grouping the Mortimore family together on 1901:

Harvey - 39

Annie Louise - 38

Cecile L - 17

Winifred A - 12

Harold W - 9

Irene M - 7

Percy R - 4

Gladys M - 2

There appear to have been two other Mortimore families in Chiswick at the time of the 1901 census,

with Arthur and Frederick belonging to another Mortimore family.

Ian

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Sidearm
Just to dip in on the Barnoldswick tank, would the length of the 6 pounder barrels (long 40 calibre early or short 23 calibre) help narrow down the suspects?

It doesn't seem to have a lengthened "tadpole" tail either, so I assume it is a Mark IV, but that's just my tuppence!! OK, OK, I'll get my coat and leave the experts to it!!!

Well actually you raise an interesting point, because there's not very much in either photo of the Barnoldswick tank to rule out a Mark III Male. However, it isn't a III and is as you surmise a IV. But this is mostly because no-one has yet found a Mark III Male used as a presentation tank! I also have another photo of this tank, which shows spaced armour (that's a tank anorak term for armour added so there's a gap between the two pieces of armoured plate) over the petrol tank and radiator, and that says Mark IV to me.

A tadpole tail was a Mark IV adaptation only, but finding a presentation tank with one would really make me fall off my seat.

(Incidentally, I do know of a Mark III Male presentation tank, but it's fitted with Female sponsons, just to confuse.)

Gwyn

P.S. Tried to upload the third Barnoldswick photo, but my computer just won't co-operate.

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Mark Hansen
Well actually you raise an interesting point, because there's not very much in either photo of the Barnoldswick tank to rule out a Mark III Male. However, it isn't a III and is as you surmise a IV. But this is mostly because no-one has yet found a Mark III Male used as a presentation tank! I also have another photo of this tank, which shows spaced armour (that's a tank anorak term for armour added so there's a gap between the two pieces of armoured plate) over the petrol tank and radiator, and that says Mark IV to me.

A tadpole tail was a Mark IV adaptation only, but finding a presentation tank with one would really make me fall off my seat.

(Incidentally, I do know of a Mark III Male presentation tank, but it's fitted with Female sponsons, just to confuse.)

Gwyn

P.S. Tried to upload the third Barnoldswick photo, but my computer just won't co-operate.

The fuel tank itself would be the give away. It was only moved outside on the Mk IV. Also, the tadpole tail was fitted to a couple of Mk V's but I think Kevin may have confused it with the extended body of the Mk V*.

Out of curiosity, which Mk III male was it and where? I know it wasn't Maidstone's tank; the WD number (617) is visible in one of the photos.

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centurion
The fuel tank itself would be the give away. It was only moved outside on the Mk IV. Also, the tadpole tail was fitted to a couple of Mk V's

and one Mk V* making it the longest tank ever built. It was unsteerable and was recoverted back to its noemal configuration

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centurion
Well actually you raise an interesting point, because there's not very much in either photo of the Barnoldswick tank to rule out a Mark III Male. However, it isn't a III and is as you surmise a IV. But this is mostly because no-one has yet found a Mark III Male used as a presentation tank!

Thats a bit of circular logic isn't it? No one has found one therefore this can't be one. However if your unpostable third photo shows a fuel tank then that's different it's evidence.

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Sidearm
Thats a bit of circular logic isn't it? No one has found one therefore this can't be one. However if your unpostable third photo shows a fuel tank then that's different it's evidence.

Logic was never a strong point at 10:57pm after a long day. But I assure you - I have the evidence.

Gwyn

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Sidearm
Out of curiosity, which Mk III male was it and where? I know it wasn't Maidstone's tank; the WD number (617) is visible in one of the photos.

Whilst finding the information to answer this, I seem to have found a second one. The one I was thinking of was Worksop, which was serial number 803 (Home Forces 8). But there's also Ashton under Lyne, serial number 815 (Home Forces 20). Both have Female sponsons but Male serial numbers. (Note the relationship between the serials and the Home Forces numbers! Deduct 795 from the serial and you get the Home Forces number. This could be coincidence, but then again...)

For completeness, the Mark III presentation tanks known to me are Ashton under Lyne, Batley, Bridlington, Canterbury, Haslingden, Maidstone, Rochester and Worksop. So eight in all. I know of none outside England.

Gwyn

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Sidearm

The reason I can't post my last Barnoldswick photo seems to be that it's a Bitmap rather than a Jpeg. Anyone help?

Gwyn

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NigelS

Hi Gwyn

If you have MS Paint (usually one of the accessories supplied with Windows) or another similar "paint" type package, you should be able to load it as a BMP, then by setting "save as type" to JPG from "File - save as", be able to save it as such (would recommend using a different filename, although your original BMP file should remain intact even if you don't). Good luck.

NigelS

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Sidearm

Thanks NigelS. Learn something new everyday.

Let's try this: the Barnoldswick tank...

post-20823-1223153350.jpg

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Mark Hansen
Whilst finding the information to answer this, I seem to have found a second one. The one I was thinking of was Worksop, which was serial number 803 (Home Forces 8). But there's also Ashton under Lyne, serial number 815 (Home Forces 20). Both have Female sponsons but Male serial numbers. (Note the relationship between the serials and the Home Forces numbers! Deduct 795 from the serial and you get the Home Forces number. This could be coincidence, but then again...)

For completeness, the Mark III presentation tanks known to me are Ashton under Lyne, Batley, Bridlington, Canterbury, Haslingden, Maidstone, Rochester and Worksop. So eight in all. I know of none outside England.

Gwyn

I don't know how much info you have on the home forces numbers and WD numbers for the Mk III females but Maidstone's requires a deduction of 544 (617 - 73). My guess is that it's coincidence but who knows?

With the Mk III male tank 815, I'm sure it appears in Osprey's Mk I book with female sponsons while presumably doing training duties. Off to work at the moment but when I get home I'll dig it out and check.

P.S.: Found it before work. Here's the picture (ignore red circle).

post-20824-1223156790.jpg

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NigelS
Thanks NigelS. Learn something new everyday.

Ten out of ten Sidearm: congratulations :D !

NigelS

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Sidearm
I don't know how much info you have on the home forces numbers and WD numbers for the Mk III females ...

I have scarcely any Mark. The only true Mark III Female for which I have both the serial number and the Home Forces number is the one you mention. Obviously you can't draw any conclusions from just one example.

Gwyn

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Repulse

Pals...

I found a nice photo postcard of the Folkestone tank yesterday at an antiques shop in Essex. Nice, clear photo...... but £25 ! Too rich for my blood, as they say. I hadn't realised these things were so pricey/scarce.

If anyone wants/needs it, it was at Sunnyside Antiques at the Battlesbridge Antiques Centre, near Rayleigh/Sarfend area.

This bloke should have his number (he's (Sunnyside) not always there).

The Old Granary Battlesbridge Essex SS11 7RE

T: 01268 575000 E: jim@battlesbridge.com

Proviso is that if you buy it I would like a nice scan so I can go and find the 'now' shot ! :P

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tanks3

Hi Jeffers,

Thanks for the tip. Card bought!!

Tanks3

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Repulse

Nice one !

I thought if I couldn't have it, someone here ought to !

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Sidearm

I have the Folkestone tank as being a Mark IV Female, Home Forces number 200 located at The Durlocks. Let's see if the photo supports that, or even better, corrects/adds to it.

Gwyn

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