Apr 152020

The Long Hard Road to Victory (1918)

The Royal Tank Corps 1918

Talk by Geoffrey Vesey Holt

The development of tanks in World War 1 was a response to the stalemate that had developed on the Western Front. The first battle in which tanks made a great impact was the battle of Cambrai in 1917. They made an unprecedented breakthrough but, as ever on the Western front, the opportunity was not exploited. Ironically, it was the soon-to-be-supplanted horse cavalry that had been assigned the task of following up the motorised tank attack. In July 1918, the French used 480 tanks at the Battle of Soissons, and there were even larger assaults planned for the next year. In “Plan 1919” it was planned to commit over 30,000 tanks to battle in that year.

Geoffrey Vesey Holt was a regular officer in the Royal Tank Regiment (RTR) and a graduate of Durham University in Modern History and of the French Staff College. He served in 1 RTR and then specialised in the Weapons Acquisitions Stream and, not surprisingly, the acquisition of Armoured Fighting Vehicles (AFVs). He is currently working on RTR’s communications of the 100th anniversary of World War 1 (the first tanks were used in 1916 and the first tank to action was in 1918). He is writing a two volume history of the Tank Corps covering 1918, running pro bono battlefield tours and lectures.

Sourced from You Tube

Credited to William Wright