The Tanks Are Coming!


“I know I am biased because I took part in World War 2 but I find it enormously heartening that there seems to be a heightened awareness these days of our armed forces and how they keep our country safe. I passionately feel that that is the way it should be and that people should always remember those that gave their lives to enable the rest of us to be free from tyranny. I totally endorse Armour & Embarkation, the WWII Tank Event” Murray Walker.
 “Basecamp” is the village of Broadmayne in Dorset and we will be staying on the historic campsite of Camp D5. The trees are still covered with the names and markings of men from the USA who were waiting for D-Day.
Camp D5 was one of many marshalling areas on the South Coast in preparation for OPERATION NEPTUNE, the Naval Invasion of the Normandy beaches on D-Day and part of the wider OPERATION OVERLORD, the battle for Normandy. These camps, also known as sausage camps because of their shape on maps, were chosen based upon certain requirements. Most obviously, they had to be a short distance from the embarkation points – at Camp D5, this was the ports of Weymouth and Portland, roughly 7 and 13 miles away.

Wooded areas were often chosen as they provided concealment from aerial surveillance, which was important to keep the movement of men, vehicles and machinery in preparation for the Channel crossing as low-key as possible. The camps at Broadmayne and West Knighton, whilst made out of canvas tents in fields, were surrounded by trees, making them a good strategic choice.

As with other marshalling areas, the US troops straightened, widened and improved the roads with tarmac to carry their vehicles. Evidence of this is still visible on Chalky Road just outside the village boundaries, where the original route of the road is visible between the trees. Hard standings and temporary Nissen huts were also put up to house vehicles and equipment, whilst the lower ranks lived in their canvas tents and the officers were billeted at Broadmayne House on Osmington Drove.

These camps were erected along the sides of the existing roads, which were used to load and unload men and supplies and so were within easy reach of the troops. The roads themselves were closed for public traffic.
The schedule for the weekend

Please note, that times are approximate and can change if we have breakdowns or traffic issues.

We are limited on numbers as we have a lot of armour coming this year. There will be a cost to cover all the expenses – we are just awaiting some final figures as we are having to undertake some ‘highway’ maintenance to get you guys with the low loaders into basecamp efficiently and a stack of other costs, so please be prepared for upto £40/head to cover everything. The event, as you can imagine is over subscribed all ready and we haven’t opened for bookings yet. It is primarily an armour event so once we know for sure what we have coming, then we can take some softskins too (mans trucks etc etc). If you are coming with armour or softskins, please be prepared to share’ a seat or two with the press.


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