Friday, February 20, 2015

Mark IV tank

The Mark IV was used at the Messines Ridge when 62 tanks were used on 7 June 1917. They outran their infantry on the broken up but dry terrain. By comparison, in the Third Ypres from the 31 July when the preliminary 24-day long barrage destroyed all drainage and there was heavy rain, the tanks found it heavy going and contributed little; those that sank into the swampy ground, were immobilized and easy targets for enemy artillery.

Nearly 460 Mark IV tanks were used during the Battle of Cambrai in November 1917, showing that a large concentration of tanks could quickly overcome even the most sophisticated trench system.

In the aftermath of the German Spring Offensive on the western front, the first tank-to-tank battle was between Mk IV tanks and German A7Vs in the Second Battle of Villers-Bretonneux in April 1918.

About forty captured Mark IVs were employed by the Germans as Beutepanzer with a crew of twelve. (The German word Beute means "loot" or "booty".) Some of these had their six pounders replaced by a German equivalent.

The last Mark IV to see service was Excellent, a Mark IV male retained by the naval gunnery school on Whale Island, HMS Excellent. In the early years of the Second World War it was restored to operational status and driven to the mainland, where its new career was allegedly brought to an early end after a number of cars were damaged.

No comments:

Post a Comment