Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

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Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby mrdeacon » Sat Aug 10, 2013 5:11 pm

Today I visited a little museum in Egremont, and whilst looking through some of the old photos from Egremont I came across a picture of tank. It's name was the "Egremont castle" and allegedly it was sponsored by the town people.
I was wondering if anyone would know where I could get any more information on this please. Apart from myself who would like to know more so would the curator of the museum.
I have ordered a copy of the photo so I will post it when I receive it.

Regards Mike.
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Re: Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby mrdeacon » Sat Aug 10, 2013 5:35 pm

I think I may have found my question.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tank_Banks
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Re: Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby plbramham » Sat Aug 10, 2013 9:01 pm

To my knowledge there were at least two "presentation tanks" in South Cumbria. These were the ones given after WW1 to towns and communities in recognition of their their fund raising efforts.
One was sited on the riverbank in Kendal, the other was on what is now a big roundabout on the main road through Ulverston. Some older locals still refer to the roundabout as "Tank Square".
Kendal also received a German field gun which was sited in Abbot Hall Park, and the museum was presented with a machine gun plus the Mayor given a pair of machine guns, captured by 6th Border.
We don't know what happened to the machineguns - maybe went to the home guard in WW2? ( Obviously the tanks went for scrap - I believe that nationally only one of the 264 presentation tanks escaped that fate, the one given to Ashford)
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Re: Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby mrdeacon » Sun Aug 11, 2013 8:06 am

Possibly scrapped and reused maybe Paul ? Times will have been hard by then.
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Re: Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby mrdeacon » Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:48 pm

I have just received the photo tonight and now had a better look at it myself, and now looking at it it looks a fake tank.
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Re: Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby mrdeacon » Sat Aug 17, 2013 8:22 pm

I got in touch with a nice little web site who research this type of thing, http://www.friends-o...oln-tank.co.uk/ and asked them about the tank and this was their nice reply.



Morning Michael,



"Thanks very much indeed for sending a copy of the photograph over to me. You are right, it's not a real tank, it's a wood and canvas replica. This tank was built in early 1918 for collecting money for the war effort. By this time, six genuine tanks were travelling around the country collecting money and they became known as the 'Tank Banks'. Unfortunately, not every town and city that wanted a visit from a tank bank could be accommodated, so many places built their own replica machines which they could trundle through the town collecting and perhaps selling war bonds. This one is one of the replica machines and a very good replica it is too, I've seen some really unconvincing examples over the years!



Thank you again for getting in touch,"
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Re: Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby kerchi » Sun Aug 18, 2013 9:18 am

This is very interesting post; wasn't aware of the Tank Bank :|

Great postcard Mike and thanks for posting as today I learned something new ;-)
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Re: Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby mrdeacon » Sun Aug 18, 2013 6:22 pm

Hi Chris I am glad you have liked this post and found something new.

I have had quite a few conversations with a nice chap from the above web site regarding the tank banks.

Here are some of the e-mails.

"I was very interested indeed to read about your discovery of a tank in Egremont, Cumbria. We at Friends of the Lincoln Tank have been doing a great deal of research into the 246 Presentation Tank, given away to towns and Cities who had done well raising money for the war effort. The tank on display in Ashford in Kent is the only one of these tanks that still exists, the rest having been scrapped long ago. We currently have a list of nine towns in Cumbria which were presented with a tank. They are Cockermouth, Kendal, Maryport, Millom, Ulverston, Whitehaven, Windermere and Workington. The nearest tank location to Egremont that we currently know about is Whitehaven. I would be very interested to see a copy of the photograph you've found and then I will be able to see if I can match it up to a location we have already recognised or it may be one we haven't seen before?"

And more detail on the Cockermouth tank.

"Cockermouth has the dubious honour of being the town which kept its Presentation Tank for the shortest time, less than one month! Consequently there appear to be no photographs of the machine in-situ.

The tank was a female Mk IV and was a late arrival, not being presented to the town until the 23rd February 1920. The dirty old machine did not sit well with most of the citizens, it hardly complimented the pretty town with its medieval and Georgian architecture. The unfortunate tank was placed on a concrete plinth at the west end of Fairfield, just opposite the Railway Station and after a short ceremony the drive chains and magneto were removed in order to disable the, mainly, unwanted monument.

On the 18th March 1920 the council were offered the huge sum of £100 from Messer’s Harris and Co Ltd who wanted the tank for scrap metal. A few years later, by the early 1930s, many old presentation tanks were being sold for as little as £5, so if they had waited Harris and Co could perhaps have saved themselves some money? The offer of such a large sum for something they had neither asked for nor particularly wanted was too much of a temptation for the council and the tank was soon chopped up and taken away for scrap.

I hope this helps, sorry I can't show you a photo, but as I say, there don't seem to be any?"
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Re: Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby kerchi » Tue Aug 20, 2013 4:19 pm

Shame about scrapping them and for so little, even then. Today we have so few and even if the citizens thought they were an eyesore for their town(s) they could have stowed them in a secure location for future generations to enjoy......but, I guess, in those days they had little thought for how popular war items of any shape and size would be today.
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Re: Sponsorship of tanks in WW1 from towns and citys

Postby plbramham » Fri Aug 23, 2013 8:59 pm

I do have a vague recollection that someone told me that there was a "Windermere tank" on The Glebe - i.e. the large grassed area next to the lake at Bowness.( Hey the "Friends of the Lake District" organisation would love that nowadays wouldn't they?! - doesn't exactly fit in with their Wordsworth etc idea of the Lakes!)
I may be wrong - it was told to me many years ago, it would have been a suitable location though - perhaps near the bandstand? (I've never seen a photo of it though)
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