Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

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Stephen White
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Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Stephen White » Wed Dec 18, 2013 2:44 pm

My old Regiment celebrates its role in the Battle of Cambrai every year on 20th November. The Mark IV is forever associated with the Royal Tank Corps and Cambrai. One Cambrai tank survives, thanks to a couple of dedicated Frenchmen who discovered D51, Deborah and created a museum around her. They have also published an extraordinary book, "Following the Tanks" which charts the movements of every tank at Cambrai. When I get home at the weekend, I'll have a look to see if it would be useful for the Armortek Mk IV.

Link to the Flesquieres Museum and Deborah here:

http://www.tank-cambrai.com/english/home.php

There is a lot of debate about WW1 tank colours but one thing not under debate is that D Battalion tanks were given the "Chinese Eye" marking, which continues to this day on the CR2s of the Royal Tank Regiment. It is rumoured that Chinese Eyes can also be found on the anatomy of some former members of Fourth Tanks - no, not me!

Stephen

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Adrian Harris
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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Adrian Harris » Fri Dec 20, 2013 7:25 pm

A very interesting website - many thanks for the link.

It sounds as though they need to do a "Mary Rose" type preservation job on Deborah, to save any further damage and decay.

Adrian.
R.I.P Margaret I.L.Y

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by dennypatterson » Fri Dec 20, 2013 7:30 pm

:lol: steven, i thought that you where there..
:lol: :lol: :lol:

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Stephen White » Wed Jan 08, 2014 11:56 am

The Tank Museum Mk IV being taken for an outing on Clouds Hill, Bovington, including driving it over a knife-edge. Can't imagine anyone doing that today with a 98 year old veteran. Also footage of Centurion, Conqueror, Cent bridgelayer and a fine handlebar moustache:

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=c2f_1310337643

Regards

Stephen

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Dennis Jones » Thu Jan 09, 2014 11:04 am

Knife edge a bit steeper these days, I drove a Challenger over it a while ago on a day at Bovington that was bid for at a charity auction by my brother in law. A session on the simulator (which was moveable cameras over a model landscape in those days), drove the Challenger out on the ranges, trip around the workshops (including down in the turret of a live Challenger), 4 course lunch in the Officers Mess and personal guided visit around the museum (as it was before the update) a good day out and if I remember he only paid about £72 for 6 people.

Dennis.

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Stephen White » Thu Jan 09, 2014 12:28 pm

Dennis - I well remember that driving sim at the D&M School. On my makey-learney tank course, we used to catch spiders and other nasties and plonk them on the model. Looked about six feet tall to the "driver". Amazing what will make some grown men freak out.........especially if you also sat on the lid so they couldn't escape. Of courxe there were others who chose to chase the creepy-crawlies around the model, which gave rise to the odd sweepstake.

Of course eventually, someone overdid it. It was a big mistake to introduce the Chief Instructor's Jack Russell to the game. He took one look at proceedings and cocked his leg on the camera. End of exercise until the camera was replaced.

We did also do the odd bit of serious training......

Stephen

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Dennis Jones » Thu Jan 09, 2014 12:53 pm

Hi Stephen,

Yes I remember the guy who showed us how to use it saying about the spiders and to be aware of them also I think I remember something about it being used to develop some parts of either the Cent or the Challenger. It was as I remember modelled on a German landscape.
Happy New Year to you and yours.

Dennis.

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Fabrice Le Roux » Wed Mar 02, 2016 11:13 pm

Hi MkIV builders,

Now all the kits are sold and accounted for. Is anyone doing, or would like to do, a Female variant, aka D51 Deborah herself?

Any owners of an unbuilt kit who would like some model engineering help to assist with this conversion,if required, please PM me. An appropriately finished model may benefit from publicity later this year, but will need to be complete (not neccessarialy running), painted, and displayable.

Don't shoot me, I'm just a messenger! :)

Regards
Fabrice

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Chris Hall » Thu Mar 03, 2016 9:35 am

Fabrice -

That's a kind offer. I've got a few suggestions for changes to the Mk. IV Female myself, if needed (but I'm no engineer !). I've also got some photos of Deborah when she had just been dug up, and was in a farmyard under a tarpaulin ....

You've got longer than you think, though ..... the centenary of Cambrai is NEXT year ! :wink:

All the best,

Chris
2 x Mark IV's (Abt. 14 Beutepanzer Liesel and F30 Flaming Fire II)
Morris Quad, limber and 25-pdr (45RA, Korea 1951)
M3 Lee (25th Dragoons, Burma 1944)

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Fabrice Le Roux » Thu Mar 03, 2016 11:25 am

Hi Chris,

Quite right! Appreciate Mark IV production did not actually start until March 1917.

However September 2016 is also the centenery of the first use of Mark 1s at Flers, and the project timetable is being driven by a book publisher. The model would need to be available from September 2016, thouch the launch date may slip.

So if anyone is contemplating doing a Female conversion, please get in touch.

regards
Fabrice

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Chris Hall » Thu Mar 03, 2016 1:20 pm

Fabrice -

Can you clarify (a bit) what the publisher wants ? Does it have to be D51 Deborah, or can it be any Mk. IV Female ?

My Beutepanzer (Liesel) is a Female, as will my next one be (F30 Flaming Fire II). I know Phil Castle is building B36 Bayardo II. Although neither of them may be finished for September ....

It's also worth thinking about Helen Lawson's stunning Mark I Male, much admired at Armortek Day.

If it must be Deborah, are my photos of interest to the publisher ?

All the best,

Chris
2 x Mark IV's (Abt. 14 Beutepanzer Liesel and F30 Flaming Fire II)
Morris Quad, limber and 25-pdr (45RA, Korea 1951)
M3 Lee (25th Dragoons, Burma 1944)

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Re: Deborah - the Flesquieres tank

Post by Fabrice Le Roux » Thu Mar 03, 2016 2:13 pm

Hi Chris,

I have limited info at this time. Mark IV Female definately, D51 paint job would be a bonus. Unpainted bare metal finish may well be acceptable if someone does not want to commit to a specific vehicle. As I said, it does not need to be powered either.

Thanks for the feedback.

regards
Fabrice

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