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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Tank sponson numbering


Mark Hansen

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I recently won a photo on eBay of a Mk I male which has the WD number not only on the front horn but also on the sponson. Has anyone else seen WD numbers, matching or otherwise, on the sponsons?

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It might have something to do with the fact that sponsons were often removed for transport by rail. Although theoretically they should be interchangeable, getting "your own" sponsons back would be desirable as you knew they fitted.

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Never seen it before but it certainyl makes sense to do so.

Interesting that there's no name on the tank

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Not sure if it's any help, but the tank is C6 under the command of Lieutenant Tarbet. There's a photo in the Osprey book 'British Mark I Tank 1916' of it ditched near Blangy Road at Arras, according to the caption it's 'The only known view of a Mk I at Arras'

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Never seen it before but it certainyl makes sense to do so.

Interesting that there's no name on the tank

Actually there is but it's too blurred for me to make out. I'll attach a close up and a negative view in case anyone else wants to have a go.

Two lines; the top appears to be "HMLS" (naturally) and the lower line appears to, and should, start with a "C".

Negative view here.

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Mark

This tank was knocked out on 9 April 1917. By that time I don't believe tank names had been standardised to start with the Battalion letter. It may well start with a C, but for Mark Is you can't assume that infers C Battalion. Prior to March 1917 this tank served with a different Battalion (one secondary source says B, another says D - blast transcription errors!).

Fantastic photo by the way. Oh, and I have seen serials painted on sponsons before, but not externally. I can think of one photo that shows one painted on the inside face of the door.

Gwyn

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