I have had this tank for sometime. Don’t remember the manufacturer, though it may be Minifigs! When I was planning some Operation Sealion games back in the 1990s I intended that the Home Guard would make use of a museum Mark IV Male tank. I mentioned this also in an article I wrote on a French themed Operation Sealion, Otaire de Vigneur.
To add a bit of diversity to my games, I also have one of Minifigs’ World War One British tanks, for use by a Home Guard unit (stolen from a local museum no doubt).
Now when I wrote that article and bought the miniature it was only an assumption and what I thought would be a nice idea, and probably had no basis in truth….
Well just shows a little historical research never hurt anyone, as the Bovington Tank Museum has on display a Mark IV Male tank that was used just in this way. It was used in World War One and then presented to the Navy. When war broke out in September 1939, the Tank Mark IV (Male) number 2324 was refurbished for Home Guard duties; according to the Bovington Tank Museum website.
Our exhibit, a male tank, was presented to the Royal Navy’s Gunnery School, HMS Excellent after the war to commemorate their help training Tank Corps gunners and it was temporarily refurbished for Home Guard duties in 1940. (Believed to have been achieved by removed parts from another tank possibly on Southsea Common.)
This photograph is from HMS Excellent in 1940.
Another view of the Mark IV at speed.
So though I thought my idea was probably if Operation Sealion had happened, I didn’t think and didn’t realise that it had in fatc happened despite the fact that the Germans hadn’t invaded.
So if you are playing Flames of War Operation Sealion games using the Blitzkreig sourcebook than you can use a Mark IV Male tank as part of your Home Guard forces.Not sure how long though it would last against German Panzers though…
Now who has the stats for a Mark IV tank for Flames of War?
A Standard Beaverette of the Home Guard on patrol by a farm.
This is a 15mm scale model with farm buildings from Hornby’s N gauge Lyddle End range.
The first version of the vehicle was built in 1940 by Standard Motor Company at the instigation of Lord Beaverbrook, then Minister of Aircraft Production (hence the name Beaverette). It was based on commercial car chassis, on which a simple riveted armoured hull was mounted. The 11mm of steel was backed by 3 inch thick oak planks. The hull was open at the top and at the rear. The armament consisted of Bren machine gun which could be fired through a slot in the glacis armour. Subsequent versions received all-around protection and a machine gun turret – an enclosed one with Bren MG or an open-topped one with twin Vickers machine guns. Some vehicles also carried Boys anti-tank rifles. Some had No. 11 or No. 19 radio set. The production was stopped in 1942. About 2,800 units were delivered.
I have always liked the idea of gaming Operation Sealion and one day I may get some more of my collection painted and out on the gaming table.
Dad’s Army defending Lyddle End from the invading German forces, circa 1940…
Many years ago I bought a bundle of Dad’s Army and German forces in 15mm for playing Operation Sealion games. I painted some, but most have spent a lot of time unprimed and unpainted.
Having recently read a few books recently which have rekindled my interest in Operation Sealion. These have included Collaborator by Murray Davies which is set in a nazi occupied Britain and tells the story of a British soldier working for the occupying forces as a translator who then gets involved in the resistance…