BRIT EUROPEAN DELIVERS FOR
GUY MARTIN AND CHANNEL 4

Guy Tank TX Card

Brit European has successfully completed a high-profile project to collect and deliver a replica
World War One from Norfolk in the UK to one of the many battlefields near Cambrai, France.

In July 2017 Brit European was contacted by JCB with a request to transport a tank chassis
from JCB, Rocester and deliver it to the Norfolk Tank Museum where it was to be made up into
a replica of one of the very first tanks to be used in battle in the first World War.

Leaving JCB

This was to be the first stage of a long and exciting journey this tank was to make over the next
four months. The finished machine was to take centre stage in a television programme being
shown on Channel 4 on Sunday 19th November at 8pm and featuring the very well known
television personality Guy Martin.

The Brit European team consisted of Ed Beresford, Rob Wardle, Craig Draper and John Jonson (JJ).

Guy and the Brit Team

Over the four months from July there was a substantial amount of planning required to ensure
that we delivered the tank on the day and at the time required so as to ensure the filming could
go ahead with the minimum of disruption.

Tank on Brit Lorry

For the initial journey, we utilised one of our Mercedes-Benz Dual Fuel Actros tractor units with
the tank nestling on the bed of one of our purpose-built step frame trailers (seen above).

We delivered the tank safely and in good time to the Norfolk Tank Museum where it was lifted
off by a heavy-duty crane and was to then be fitted with tracks, an engine, a gearbox and the
replica Lewis machine guns. All this work was carried out by Guy Martin and the crew from the
Norfolk Tank Museum.

Pictured is Guy Martin with the tank in Cambrai, Northern France JCB TEAM HELPS ENGINEER WW1 TANK CENTENARY TRIBUTE EXCAVATOR giant JCB helped TV personality Guy Martin to engineer a tribute to the role tanks played in helping change the course of the First World War. Now the story of the tankÕs role and its modern-day recreation will be told in a Channel Four documentary ÔGuy MartinÕs WW1 One TankÕ on Sunday, November 19 at 8pm. The truck mechanic and TV presenter came up with the idea of producing a replica of a 30-tonne Mark IV tank to mark the centenary of a battle in which they were first deployed. And he turned to JCBÕs engineers and welders to help turn his dream into reality in time for the special anniversary. They rose to the challenge in double-quick time with the profile parts cut, rolled and bent into shape at JCB Heavy Products in Uttoxeter before being welded together at JCBÕs World HQ in Rocester. The huge team effort ensured the tank was operational and on display in Cambrai, Northern France on Armistice Day on Saturday, November 11th. It was at this location - exactly 100 years ago - where the original Mark IV tank helped the Allies on the Western Front to make an unprecedented breakthrough at the Battle of Cambrai. Guy Martin was given just five months to build an authentic reproduction of the 30-tonne tank from scratch and was quick to call on JCBÕs engineering expertise. At more than 26 feet long and 10 feet wide, the 105 horsepower machine had a top speed of just four mph Guy said: ÒWhen I first looked at this challenge, I thought ÔThis is a big ask. WeÕre not going to see this happen.Õ It is a massive undertaking and JCB was the main reason this was able to happen. They built the main part of the tank, and then the lads at the Norfolk Tank Museum put all the engine together. But JCBÕs technology and knowhow was so important. ÒAs a challenge to build it, IÕd say this is the biggest thing weÕve undertak

A couple of months passed by until we then received the call to say that the tank was now
complete and ready to go to France.

On Friday 10th November, we collected the Tank from Norfolk now utilising an Iveco Stralis
tractor unit and a Broshuis 3 axle low bed trailer.

Sailing on one of the very early morning DFDS ferry crossings from Dover we arrived in Calais
at 0700 hours where we were met by a French Convoi Exceptional Pilot Vehicle for the long
and sometimes extremely slow journey from Calais to Cambrai.

Because of a ban on Abnormal Loads using the French motorway network we had to follow
a route through village after a village which in itself caused us problems. All the while we
were conscious that we had to be in Cambrais for no later than 1300 hours before the HGV
ban came into place.

Tank and Veteran

We arrived in Cambrais at 13:30 where we were met by a sizeable crowd of people consisting
of spectators, film crew, military personnel and the JCB contingent and of course Guy Martin.

Veteran following Tank

The tank was offloaded on Saturday 11th November Armistice Day and sited at the battlefield
at Viliers-Pluoich just outside of Cambrai where filming began almost immediately and finished
in the early evening of the same day.

Tank driving past war graves

We are all extremely pleased of the part Brit European played in ensuring that the tank was
delivered on time and at exactly the right location.

A proud and humbling experience.

Police Convoy

Original Tank

 

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