NormandyTrip: Back to England and Bovington Tank Museum.

The overnight ferry from La Harve to Portsmouth was uneventful, I spent it either reading or watch films on my tablet, also it was the longest I’ve ever spent on a ship. As we arrived early on Friday morning I went on deck as the boat docked to see what was moored up in Portsmouth Harbour. The two historic ships HMS Victory and HMS Warrior were visible along with a fair few contemporary RN vessels including the new HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier.


HMS Warrior, undergoing some restortation.



HMS Victory.



HMS Queen Elizabeth, Britain’s biggest ever warship, I have to admit feeling a little underwhelmed by it.



A Type 45 Destroyer HMS Dragon.There were at least 4 Type 45s berthed when I was there.

After docking we drove a hour and a half westwards to visit Bovington Tank Museum, a place that has been on my must visit list for a long time. The number of vehicles on display is mind boggling. Divided up into different sections it takes you through the development of the tank then we went through the Trench Experience covering WW1 and from War Horse to Horse Power and much more including the Tiger exhibit bring together a Tiger and Elefant, two Tiger IIs and a Jagdtiger. I took so many photos I can’t upload them all but I’ll put up a representative sample. If anyone has anything in particular they want to see let me know and I’ll post it.


A view of the first hall we went in, Centurion front and centre.



WW1 Mk IV ‘female’ tank.



British Crusier tank from 1940.


A Panzer III painted up in Africa Korp colours.



A Sherman Firefly with Cromwell in the background.



Moving on to modern stuff we have a T72 with a Patton in the background.



A Saladin Armoured Car



British Challenger.



Another shot of the Firefly and Cromewll with the front ofa Chruchill peeking in.


In the WW1 section we have a MkII tank.



A Mk IV male with fascine.


Austin Armoured Car of the type used in Ireland during the Anglo-Irish war.



Tiger II with Porsche turret and Jagdtiger.


Tiger II with Henschel turret.



Elefant (all the way from the US) and Tiger 131.



Hetzer SPG in front of a Jagdpanther.



Protype of the Tortoise SPG- a British proposal to attack the Siegfried line.



A T34/76 in Finnish colours.



The ridiculous TOG II- a British failure from WW2, very cool all the same though.



British heavy metal.



The Sherman used in the recent Brad Pitt film ‘Fury’ still with its sfx weathering.



Not all of the vehicles that are in the Bovington Collection are on public display- this is a view of part of the storage shed.

Going round Bovington took all day; all that was left was a long drag on a journey North back to Yorkshire to end Dad and I’s holiday.






9 comments on “NormandyTrip: Back to England and Bovington Tank Museum.

  1. Would love to go here. So many cool vehicles.

  2. Glad you liked Bovington, it’s quite an experience.

  3. Azazel says:

    Just amazing, and the way the machines are treated just makes an unfortunate joke of Puckapunyal.

    • Pete S/ SP says:

      Thanks. The vehicleat Puckapunyal don’t look too bad, especially compared to the some of the ones at the Aberdeen proving ground. I suspect the Australian climate is better for storing them outside than the UK’s usually rainy weather.



      • Azazel says:

        They look good in the photos but in person they aren’t especially well looked after with webs and muck on them. At least the two times I’ve been there I was impressed by the machines but not by how they were looked after.

  4. Excellent kit all round; especially Warrior. I however exclude Queen Liz – an aircraft carrier with no aircraft (and not likely to have for the next foreseable few years!)

    • Pete S/ SP says:

      Yes I’d love another look round Warrior- it has been about 30 years since I was last there. I’ve family down that way so I really should arrange another visit. Queen Liz … not as impressive as I was expecting. Less said about the trials and tribulations of the F35 too.



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