In common with many other towns and cities in the United Kingdom, tanks from the Great War were put on display as memorials and in recognition of the funds contributed to the war effort by the individual towns.
Tanks were provided to Newport and Ryde in 1919. Both were Mark IV 'female' tanks; i.e. they were equipped with 6 Lewis machine guns rather than the guns carried by the 'male' tank. The armament of all Male tanks were 6 pounder ex-Naval guns, initially of full length but Mk IV's and subsequent models all had shortened barrels to prevent them "digging in". The reduction in Muzzle velocity was not of significance as they did not employ Armour Piercing ammunition at that date.
Both the tanks had apparently seen operational service in the first battle of Cambrai and in the Ypres area.
In Newport, the sum raised for the war effort in the period 1st October 1917 to 18th January 1918 was £403,593.
In Ryde, the sum raised for the war effort in the same period was £501,432.
For more details of the Newport tank, see Newport tank
For more details of the Ryde tank, see Ryde tank
The Mk IV female tank at Ryde. Image taken from postcards held by, and reproduced with the permission of, The Tank Museum, Bovington, Dorset.
Tank Museum photo Ref 6532/A2
click image for larger picture
The Newport tank at Victoria Recreation Ground.
Photo taken from "Newport in Old Photographs" by Donald A Parr (1994).
Thanks to David Longster for this.
page last updated : 23rd February 2010 (split pages into Ryde and Newport)