Montfaucon Sherman Tank

The battlefields of the First and Second World War criss-cross in many places and while out visiting the Verdun area today we came across this M4 Sherman in the main square at Montfaucon d’Argonne, a village that was on the line of the American advance in 1918 and also in 1944 a generation later in…

Buffalo LVT Memorial

The ‘Water Buffalo’ LVT (Landing Vehicle Tracked) was used by the British and Commonwealth forces in North-West Europe in 1944/45 both in seaborne landings, in flooded areas of Holland and Germany and river crossings like the Rhine in March 1945. The Buffalos were normally operated by units in the 79th (Armoured) Division. It could hold…

WW2 Book Review: Over The Battlefield

Over The Battlefield: Operation Goodwood by Ian Daglish (Pen & Sword 2015, ISBN 978 1 84415 153 0, 272pp, illustrated, paperback, £14.99) The ‘Over The Battlefield’ series of books by Pen & Sword and authored by Ian Daglish take a different angle when examining some of the key battles of the Normandy Campaign by using…

Ede Sherman

We ended our journey following the battles of 1945 in Holland, looking at the ground around Arnhem. Most people who come to Arnhem do so to follow the Airborne element of Operation Market Garden and examine the fighting here from a 1944 perspective, perhaps not even realising that there was a battle at Arnhem in…

Seelow Heights Battlefield

Today we spent the day looking round the Seelow Heights battlefield which saw fighting from January through to April 1945 when the position finally fell and the road was open to Berlin for the advancing Soviet forces. Like the Oderfront we visited the other day, this is not an area for the casual visitor as…

Woensdrecht Canadian Sherman

In October 1944 the Canadian forces in North Belgium crossed the Dutch border during Operation Switchback and landed on the Dutch coast. The objective was Antwerp and in an effort to secure the approaches the village of Woensdrecht was attacked by infantry from the 2nd Canadian Division, supported by tanks from the Fort Garry Horse….

BEF Memorial, Risquons-Tout

When the German Blitzkrieg was unleashed on Western Europe in May 1940 the British Expeditionary Force crossed from France into Belgium and attempted to defend the River Dyle. Thrown back, units were split up and often many miles apart – cohesion was a great problem as many individual battles were fought, often in now forgotten…

Polish Sherman, Tielt

The free Polish forces landed in Normandy in the late summer of 1944 and took part in the breakout from Normandy. By early September they had taken part in the ‘Great Swan’ across France and entered Belgium. They liberated the city of Ypres, on the old WW1 battlefields, on 6th September 1944 and two days…

Panther Tank, Saumur

The Musée des Blindes, or Tank Museum, at Saumur is one of the major collections of tanks and Armoured Fighting Vehicles in the world. It has an impressive collection of WW2 tanks and in January 2015 I had the chance to finally spend some time looking round this collection. For someone brought up on Airfix…

Hechtel Sherman Firefly

Belgium has its far share of surviving Shermans and another example of a Sherman Firefly is found in the border town of Hechtel. This region was liberated by British troops in September 1944 and it became a marshalling area for the Guards Armoured Division during Operation Market-Garden later that month. This Sherman Firefly is painted…