Normandy Tank Museum (Picture Heavy)

I’m just back from a three week holiday in France, much of which was spent in Normandy looking around  the battlefields of 1944.  I spent most of my time along near Bayeaux and Caen, the part of Normandy that was fought over by the British and Canadians, but one day I ventured along to Sainte-Mère-Église, home of the Musée Airborne, and visited some of the sites fought over by American Airborne Divisions on D-Day.  I have recently finished a Platoon of US Paratroops for the soon to be released Chain of Command from TwofatLardies and was seeking inspiration for scenarios.

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Stuart M5A1

On the way along the route nationale from Bayeaux I passed a tank parked by the side of the road and a big sign advertising the Normandy Tank Museum,  something I’d never heard of before.  It took me ages to find the museum, the signposting was not good, but I eventually found it hiding behind a building site in the village of Catz, just along the road from Carentan.

Normandy is home to many museums and it has to be said that the quality is highly variable, but I’m certainly glad I invested the  €8 it costs for a ticket here.

The Normandy Tank Museum is indeed new, it opened in June this year, and  is home to a fantastic private collection of WWII US vehicles all of which have been fully restored and in full working order.  On the day I visited there were two Shermans, two Stuarts, a Priest, a Chafee, a Greyhound armoured car and loads of US transport vehicles  on display.

There were also a few bits of German kit, a Panzer IV in a bit of a state, a Kubelwagen, and a motorbike with sidecar, but it has to be said that the focus is mainly on the US and Free French.

Below are some pictures from my visit, the quality is not particularly good,  I took them on my phone as my camera was out of batteries.

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M5 Stuart

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Sherman M4 105
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Free French Sherman

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M24 Chafee

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Priest

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Greyhound Armoured Car

 

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Amtrak LVT with Jeep

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DUKW

Weapon Carrier

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2 1/2 ton 6×6 (Short Wheel Base)

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3/4-ton command truck

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3/4-ton Ambulance

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M5 Halftrack

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M3 White Scout Car

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Inside the Scout Car

 

M25 40-ton tractor (Dragon Wagon) with flat-bed trailer for tank recovery

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Amtrak on the flatbed

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L4H Grasshopper Piper Cub

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Car paimted to look like one used by the Resistance during the Liberation of Paris

Panzer IV

Panzer IV – according to staff at the museum this is not due to be restored and will be kept like this.

 

Kubelwagen

Kubelwagen

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Motorcycle combination with trailer

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