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D-Day Anniversary - The Dieppe Raid and Hobart’s Funnies


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Tigger3 #21 Posted 09 June 2015 - 08:09 PM

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View Postmh1ultramarine, on 06 June 2015 - 06:24 PM, said:

I don't think the British used the Sherman DD. I think they went, umm, let's just put it on the landing craft. While the US got one to the beach, where it broke down.

 

British as said used the Sherman DD on Normandy and later used them during the clearing of the Scheldt Estuary and several river crossings. Valentine DD tanks were also used in Italy during some of the river crossings.

 

The British did land some 'Dry Shod' though as the sea was considered too rough (the landing craft commanders final decision). 

 

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 Dieppe’s failure revealed key weaknesses of the British Churchill tanks that were used in the raid. Churchill infantry-support tanks were designed to help and protect attacking troops. Well-armoured and featuring a gun in the turret as well as a howitzer in the hull, these were supposed to be unstoppable juggernauts with anti-tank and anti-infantry capabilities. Instead, their slow speed, considerable weight and exposed tracks left them as sitting ducks on Dieppe’s shingle beaches. Unable to gain purchase on the loose terrain, the Churchills slipped and slid on rocks and pebbles. Many were taken out by coastal defences before they were able to fire a single shot.

 

 

The article is a bit wrong with regards to the Churchills at Dieppe as more than half of those landed got off the beach and onto the promenade (29 of 30 landed but two drowned so 27 made the beach - 15 got off the beach and 10 returned after not being able to progress) - they could not progress further due to the Sappers being unable to clear the obstacles preventing the tanks from moving further inland. Most of those then returned to the beach to carry on fighting. 

 

Eight were known damaged by enemy action (7 shell fire, 1 aircraft bomb), six were disabled but no record of how. five were disabled by chert build up (stones breaking track or idler - one was also recorded as shellfire after other track was broken) and one was bogged down. 

 

They were about the only tracked vehicle that could have even attempted to climb off the beach - and contrary to popular myth most did make it off the beach. The inability of the Canadian Royal Engineers to breach the defenses stopped them - unprotected men could not last in the storm of fire - hence the development of the AVRE with the capability for Sappers to get close to obstacles while well protected then dismount to set charges - The Petard Mortar was a late development added and improved their capability. 

 

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 "…in its present form the Churchill is easy to fight…poor and obsolete…" – German reports on the Churchill tanks that took part in the Dieppe Raid

 

This quote comes back to bite them in the butt - the Churchill proved its worth again and again against the Axis from North Africa onwards - surprising the Germans with its climbing ability and rough ground capability - often being the only vehicle that could move off road (and where the germans believed was impossible for tanks to go)

 

The picture of a Churchill ARK (Armoured Ramp Carrier) is described wrong - it was a vehicle designed to drive into gaps (rivers, craters) then lower the ramps to allow vehicles cross - not for crossing barbed wire. 

 

The Sherman crabs could not use their main gun while flailing which was their main disadvantage - detonation of a mine usually destroyed one of the flails but did not really damage the operational capability of the vehicle. 



tigerstreak #22 Posted 10 June 2015 - 04:36 PM

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View PostGremlin182, on 10 June 2015 - 08:42 AM, said:

Thank you General Hobart for designing many of these "funnies"

 

Have often wondered if those tanks had been used on all the beaches if lives would have been saved, would Bl**dy Omaha have got that name.

Sadly we will never know

 

btw can I have a petard mortar Churchill please

Ive heard it said that before diepe, people tried to get tank funnies, but it was only diepe raid, that made them realise that without funnies, the odds were very bad, at being able to attack these specific defences...

 

Ps  bovington tank museum has a demolition churchie, pm me if you want any specific photos of it, as ive got some +can take any specific ones u want, that i dont have...


Edited by tigerstreak, 10 June 2015 - 04:43 PM.


tigerstreak #23 Posted 10 June 2015 - 04:40 PM

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Not seen any specific articles on when funnies came ashore.

I guess the dds came in, to win a beach head +the 1st funnies mustve come in pretty soon afterwards, in tank landing craft?

As they had all the bobbin, roadway laying +sea wall demolition tanks to get ashore... To clear the beach +ready it as a proper beachhead for logistics movements...



Tigger3 #24 Posted 10 June 2015 - 08:06 PM

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View Posttigerstreak, on 10 June 2015 - 03:40 PM, said:

Not seen any specific articles on when funnies came ashore.

I guess the dds came in, to win a beach head +the 1st funnies mustve come in pretty soon afterwards, in tank landing craft?

As they had all the bobbin, roadway laying +sea wall demolition tanks to get ashore... To clear the beach +ready it as a proper beachhead for logistics movements...

 

An excellent book about the 'Funnies' and 79th Armd Div - detailing a lot of information about the invasion is 

 

Cracking Hitler's Atlantic Wall - The 1st Assault Brigade Royal Engineers on D-Day, by Richard C Anderson Jr

 

You could also get a free book from Amazon on the kindle app (do not know if it still is though)

 

Hobarts 79th Armoured Division at War, Invention, Innovation and Inspiration, by Richard Doherty



Tigger3 #25 Posted 10 June 2015 - 08:10 PM

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View Posttigerstreak, on 10 June 2015 - 03:36 PM, said:

Ive heard it said that before diepe, people tried to get tank funnies, but it was only diepe raid, that made them realise that without funnies, the odds were very bad, at being able to attack these specific defences...

 

Ps  bovington tank museum has a demolition churchie, pm me if you want any specific photos of it, as ive got some +can take any specific ones u want, that i dont have...

 

Britain had started building recovery tanks during WW1, bridging tanks were developed in the 1920's, mine rollers and ploughs were developed in the 1930's with some actually being taken to France in 1940 by the BEF (not used though due to how the fighting went). 

 

Many aspects of what later became the AVRE's (all types)  already existed but like many things they were ignored and forgotten about due to budget reasons as much as anything else



GordonRamsay #26 Posted 10 June 2015 - 11:58 PM

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Hobart funnies? You mean Scientology?

tigerstreak #27 Posted 11 June 2015 - 03:52 PM

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View PostTigger3, on 11 June 2015 - 09:06 AM, said:

 

An excellent book about the 'Funnies' and 79th Armd Div - detailing a lot of information about the invasion is 

 

Cracking Hitler's Atlantic Wall - The 1st Assault Brigade Royal Engineers on D-Day, by Richard C Anderson Jr

 

You could also get a free book from Amazon on the kindle app (do not know if it still is though)

 

Hobarts 79th Armoured Division at War, Invention, Innovation and Inspiration, by Richard Doherty

Thx for the info, ill have to put them on order.






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