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Lincspoacher

The Boston Lincolnshire Tank?

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Lincspoacher

Hello sorry if this is the wrong place or has already been done but this photo has just under discussion on local social media and I am surprised to see that a ww1 tank was once in retirement in my local town! They had quite an arsenal in Boston that started with a pair of Russian cannon from Sebastopol? a ww1 field gun ( just out of the picture) and finally the tank that I understand came to Boston in 1918/19 and was broken for scrap in the 1930's! They are all gone now I would be grateful and interested to know if any forum members can help rediscover this lost part of Boston history?

 

Lincspoacher

baw__028.jpg

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mancpal

I can't help with the Boston connection but many towns were gifted a presentation tank at the end of the war. I think I read that the towns chosen had made a valuable contribution to the war effort. I only recently discovered that both Ashton-under-Lyne and neighbouring Stalybridge were awarded one each so I started asking questions about their respective locations. It sparked a couple of discussions/disputes in local pubs and the consensus of opinion was there was a tank in Stamford Park but nobody on the day could say to which town it belonged. Due to outside influences ( this forum I think) I was proud to announce that both towns tanks were sited in the same park which I do suspect is true but I've not yet looked for evidence. As with most of these presentation tanks they appear to have been scrapped in the '30s though whether this was for obtaining steel for the forthcoming war effort or simply they had gone out of favour I couldn't say.

 

Simon

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Lincspoacher

I was wondering if there were any records made about these memorial tanks and their military services? 

 

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GWF1967
48 minutes ago, Lincspoacher said:

I was wondering if there were any records made about these memorial tanks and their military services? 

 

Here’s my local tank. 

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ajsmith

Have been reading the local press concerning the Tank presented to the town in August 1919. It seems that it was never universally popular. It was seen as a bit of an eyesore, costly to site and maintain and an unpleasant reminder of a terrible conflict. It was eventually sold for scrap in September 1937. There is a photo of it being dismantled in the Boston Guardian but it is far too dark on the BNA to make out very much.

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ajsmith

I had a quick stab at improving the photo I mentioned in my previous post. You can just about make the tank out now!! 

Tank.jpg

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Lincspoacher

Thank you ajsmith for your work and discovery.  I would be great if the war office or others kept any records about these tanks if they had unique numbers that could be connected to their war service and crews. I don't know enough about them!

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mancpal

Forum members Gareth Davies and Delta are tank nuts, perhaps a PM to one of them may enlighten you to potential sources of information.

 

Simon

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johntaylor

Hi, there are quite a few tank nuts on the Forum - I'm sure Gareth and Stephen will be along soon, though the main expert on this particular topic is probably Gwyn Evans (Sidearm).

 

In the meantime, a comprehensive listing of presentation tanks is available from the Friends of the Lincoln Tank: https://www.friendsofthelincolntank.co.uk/merchandise/

 

Hope this is helpful!

 

John

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Lincspoacher

Thank you for those leads! It would be great to see one in the town now but it wouldn't have likely made it though ww2's scraping schemes. Just got to track down it's partner field gun and 2 Sebastopol cannon? 

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johntaylor

Good luck with your search! I don't want to sound like a pessimist, but I'm afraid they would have been melted down long ago. The only one left in situ is at Ashford in Kent: https://news.ashford.gov.uk/news/ashford-tank/

 

John

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Lincspoacher

If only people had cherished them more like Ashford! Am I right in thinking that each tank had a unique number and service history or were such records for vehicles only kept later on?

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johntaylor

Each tank had a manufacturer's number which was normally a  3 to 5-digit code number painted on the rear of the tank, and also inside the cab. They were also given crew numbers which normally began with the letter of the tank battalion (e.g. 1st Tank Bn tanks started with 'A'), followed by 2-digits. Unlike the manufacturer's number, these could vary during the life of the tank. The most comprehensive guide to these numbers is on the Landships site: https://sites.google.com/site/landships/home/generaltankinformation

 

Service history is more complicated - I know tanks had individual log books but these have rarely survived. Other people many know more about this than I do!

 

John

 

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Lincspoacher

thank you johntaylor that reference material will keep me happy for ages!

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