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Other titles:INVASION EQUIPMENT TRIALS [Allocated Series Title]
Summary: Trials of various methods of overcoming passive beach defences at Westward Ho and Braunton, watched by military experts at the Combined Operations Experimental Establishment based at Appledore (Devon).
Description: I. Reel One. Churchill II runs over a series of beach roadways: 2 inch steel tubes laid on matting; coir matting over Somerfeldt track; 2 inch tubular steel laid on sand.
II. Churchill with TLC Carpet Laying Device successfully crosses a low barrier of firmly picketed barbed wire, but a subsequent attempt against a high barrier of loose wire fails, because the wire springs back behind the tank, distorting the carpet and making it impassable for infantry.
III. After failing to climb unaided over 2-1/2, 2 ft and 1-1/2 ft walls, a Churchill attempts the same obstacles, equipped with a Twin Bobbin device for laying chespaling track - the 2 ft wall is successfully surmounted.
IV. Churchill, turret reversed, charges an obstacle 70 ft long, 18 ft deep and 12 ft high, constructed from 2 inch steel tubes. The tank breaks through, overturning the whole structure. A Matilda tank also drives through, widening the breach, and is followed by a non-armoured recovery tractor.
V. Reel Two. Series of tests with 2-pounder and 6-pounder AT, 6-1/2 lb 'beehive' charges, and a 47 lb hand charge, used against concrete obstacles. Matilda tank with 'carrot' charge on AMRA 1a mounting, and a similarly equipped Covenanter, lay 200 and 700 lb charges against walls and concrete 'egg' obstacles. Reel Three. Churchill and Matilda negotiate breached walls. A 350 lb 'hayrick' charge is used to demolish a wall 9 ft high and 6 ft thick. A 200 lb 'carrot' with fragmentation plates is used against a tubular steel obstacle and a wire-filled gully. 200 lb 'carrot' clears a gap in a lightly covered minefield.
VI. 200 ft of Cortex fuse fired from a Schermuly pistol. Wire cutting grapnel fired 250 yards by 5 inch CW rocket. Test of an improvised grapnel made from two pick-heads welded together.
VII. Percussion pole charge of 20 lb of '808' high explosive on a 25 ft pole - the spar is carried by a small motor launch.