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Remembered Today:

Looking for "Skinny Liz"

Sgt Stripes

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Hi. I read a small article that mentions a Artillery gun with the nickname SKINNY LIZ, apparently used to great effect at the battle of Trekkopjes 26.April 1915 knocking out several enemy guns. Does anyone have any more information on this Gun.     

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1 minute ago, Sgt Stripes said:

Where would the British Army be without Biscuit Tins.  


Indeed! and not just one rquired, but two in this case :)

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Many thanks Michaeldr for the information. Never mind the ammunition pass the hob knobs. 

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  • 8 months later...

Just to add a bit more about Skinny Liz Gerald L’ange in his book ‘Urgent Imperial Service’ states “Whether it ever scored a hit is unknown; it certainly never brought an aircraft down.”  Lt. Colonel H.F. Trew in his “Botha Treks” memoir recorded it as “…never came near making a hit.”   The use of shrapnel firing 4” and 4.7” guns was more successful.  W.S. Rayner and W.W. O’Shaughnessy in their book ‘How Botha and Smuts Conquered German South West’ quote the German newspaper Windhuk Südwest reporting two of their planes being hit at 6,000 feet, one in 150 places.


To perform its anti aircraft role the gun was angled at 60 degrees.  Unfortunately it required resetting after every round, so all in all not very effective as an anti aircraft gun! 


General Sir Martin Farndale may be over it egging it a bit in his description of Skinny Liz neutralizing the German artillery at the Battle of Trekkopies on 26 April 1915 but this was her finest hour and provided, along with the Rolls Royce armoured cars, something of a nasty surprise to the attacking Germans.


Finally the gun still exists or at least it did in 2015 in Kimberley, South Africa.  See this link to an article and photo.




Hope is of interest.


James W

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Holger Kotthaus

The German pilot, Alexander von Scheele, who flew reconnaissance flights with his Aviatik-plane over

Trepkkopje and on May 1, 1915, throw several small bombs on the English camp, writes in his notes:


“I flew over the Khan Mountains to get to the English camp from the south this time. I soon saw how

right I was, for the entire northern height of Trepkkopje was manned with artillery, which were firing at

me from a long distance. No shot came from the camp; probably they had their new anti-balloon

cannon there and wanted me to come down closer."


Could be `Skinny Liz´


Cheers Holger


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