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Nick Johns

Churchill tank hull recovered from the South Downs, Sussex

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On 9/4/2019 at 5:11 PM, MatchFuzee said:

Interesting to see how many have survived in the UK, from range targets to restored:-

http://www.armourinfocus.co.uk/a22new/register/thelot.htm

This entry caught my eye:

MkVII Bridgelayer

Recently unearthed south of Bordon Camp in Hampshire
In very poor condition but possibly to undergo a comestic restoration to provide a gate guardian.

Does anyone have any details on this? 

About 10 years ago whilst out mountain biking on the lands near Bordon I came across a small hole dug into the side of an earthen mound. In the hole was a large section of steel armour, possibly with a suspension mount, that featured the kind of hole only an anti-tank round can make when it does its job.

I had forgotten all about that until reading the above...I must go back and investigate soon.

 

 

 

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I have no idea what may have been buried over the years in Bordon, but there were a lot of wrecks, both armoured and soft skin that were used for recovery training and other purposes which may well have been lost or deliberately covered over to save having to move them when no longer required.

Edited by Ex-boy
Added information

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Agreed. Slab Common used to be (might still be...not been there for a while) full of hulks used to practice recovery I believe.

This hulk was not there, but in an unusual location one would not normally associate with armour in the modern times.

So I will take a trip over there sometime I think.

Edited by SimonBrown

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Slab common had real gems in the past, like Cromwell tanks, Brengun carriers, Comet, etc etc. Weavers down at the back of Longmoor camp had two massive demolition pits, one filled in years ago but the place is littered with bits of tank armour wheels etc. The used to blow up tanks to test charges and armour and most probably see if it was feasible to repair at the workshops at Bordon. God knows what went into the filled pit.

Recently a couple of years ago the cadets were digging in at Weavers down and came across a metal lump in the ground and found a Churchill tank buried along with others in various states which Bovington took some away, the remaining they didn't want they just reburied. There are loads of vehicles buried all over the place. I have been approached to help find  lost tank over Longmoor but heard no more. 

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My Uncle was a Royal Engineer regular, in heavy earth moving.  He said one of jobs was they were constructing a tank training area in Wales and the hillocks that the tanks had to climb, had a core of Churchill tanks stacked on top of each other, which were then buried under tons of earth.

 

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3 hours ago, T8Hants said:

My Uncle was a Royal Engineer regular, in heavy earth moving.  He said one of jobs was they were constructing a tank training area in Wales and the hillocks that the tanks had to climb, had a core of Churchill tanks stacked on top of each other, which were then buried under tons of earth.

 

Guess he never said where in Wales?

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3 hours ago, Richard Farrant said:

Sounds like it might have been Castlemartin. Not sure if tanks were used around Sennybridge

Castlemartin rings a bell, I should be in contact over the holiday, so I will try and remember to ask.

 

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On 12/17/2019 at 11:35 AM, BC312 said:

Weavers down at the back of Longmoor camp had two massive demolition pits, one filled in years ago but the place is littered with bits of tank armour wheels etc. The used to blow up tanks to test charges and armour and most probably see if it was feasible to repair at the workshops at Bordon. God knows what went into the filled pit.

Recently a couple of years ago the cadets were digging in at Weavers down and came across a metal lump in the ground and found a Churchill tank buried along with others in various states which Bovington took some away, the remaining they didn't want they just reburied. 

Duplicate! Doh.

Edited by SimonBrown

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On 12/17/2019 at 11:35 AM, BC312 said:

Weavers down at the back of Longmoor camp had two massive demolition pits, one filled in years ago but the place is littered with bits of tank armour wheels etc. The used to blow up tanks to test charges and armour and most probably see if it was feasible to repair at the workshops at Bordon. God knows what went into the filled pit.

Recently a couple of years ago the cadets were digging in at Weavers down and came across a metal lump in the ground and found a Churchill tank buried along with others in various states which Bovington took some away, the remaining they didn't want they just reburied. 

This would fit - someone had been digging and uncovered part of what looked like armour that had taken a hit from AP.

I really must take a ride out that way soon and see what's there.

Edited by SimonBrown

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There is a lot of blown hull parts, i think from a Churchill at the entrance to the pit and one big chunk along the road to the mast on the brow of the hill. 

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On 12/21/2019 at 3:28 PM, BC312 said:

There is a lot of blown hull parts, i think from a Churchill at the entrance to the pit and one big chunk along the road to the mast on the brow of the hill. 

Chunk of armour with hand for scale.

This welded chunk is by the entrance to the pit and has taken a few hits in its time. 

Missed the big chunk near the brow of the hill. 

Whilst fully respecting its not much to go on...any guesses what this section is from?

SBrown-20191229-0002.jpg

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lol i was there on saturday :)

it's the hull mg plate from the left side of a cromwell

great minds think alike!

 

IMG_20191228_112715_2.jpg

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about 5m away from the pit entrance is a hump in the path, there's a piece of churchill track sticking up from the ground. i have a feeling the hump is made up from bits of tank that was bulldozed out of way during a clean up.

 

IMG_20191228_121421_5.jpg

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