INFANTRY TANK (A22-A) Churchill Mk. I

INFANTRY TANK (A22-A) Churchill Mk. I
Image: Churchill Mk. I (IWM)
YearJune 1941
Vehicle TypeHeavy Infantry Tank
Origin & DesignerBritain/Various
Numbers Produced303
Crew5 (Commander, Gunner, Loader Hull Gunner & Driver)
Main Armament1 x OQF 2 pdr L/50 Mk. IX Gun & 1 x 3in Mk. I Howitzer
Main Armament[@sponson_traverse]
Elevation2 pdr/Turret: -15° to +20°.
3in/Hull: -5° to +
Turret Traverse360° (Powered)
Gun Traverse[@gun_traverse]
Gun Mount[@gun_mounts]
Maximum Range[@maximum_range]
Armour Penetration[@armour_penetration]
Gun SightNo. 30 Mk. IIS (2 pdr) No. 31 (3in)
Secondary Armament1 x 7.92mm Besa Machine Gun (Coaxial).
1 x .303 Bren Machine Gun (AA Mount).
Smoke Discharger2 x 2in Smoke Mortars
Ammunition Carried150 x 40mm & 58 x 76.2mm + 4.950 x 7.92mm & 600 x .303 + 25 x Smoke
Combat Weight38.000 kg
Ground Clearance0.51m
Fording Depth0.91m
Trench Crossing3.66m
Obstacle Clearance1.22m
Climbing Ability34°
RadioNo. 19 Set
ArmourHull Front: 89mm.
Hull Sides: 76mm.
Hull Rear: 50mm.
Hull Top: 16mm.
Hull Bottom: 16mm.
Gun Mantle: 102mm.
Turret Front: 102mm.
Turret Sides: 88mm.
Turret Rear: 88mm.
Turret Top: 28mm.
EngineTwo Bedford Twin-Six (Petrol)
Transmission4 Forward & 1 Reverse
Maximum Road Range259 km
Maximum Cross Country Range154 km
Maximum Water Range[@maximum_water_range]
Maximum Road Speed26 kph
Maximum Cross Country Speed14 kph
Maximum Water Speed[@maximum_water_speed]
NotesThe British Army was still under the illusion that the next war in Europe would fought in the same way as the last, therefore they kept to the tradition of a slow moving Infantry tank that could gap trenches and take heavy punishment. The Churchill was supposed to be the next in a line of Infantry tanks that started with the Matilda series. The first Churchill saw action in the ill-fated Dieppe raid in which most floundered on the beach. Six Churchill saw action in the second battle of El Alamein. Churchill production was about to be suspended in 1943 but for the exploits at the battle of Longstop hill in Tunisia, there the Churchill shown its true potential as a tough tank with good climbing ability which guaranteed that the Churchill should be kept in production. The Mk. I had a turret mounted 2 pdr and a 3in howitzer mounted in the hull, and it was this version that landed in support of the Canadians at Dieppe, it was also used in Tunisia and a few survived to take part in the battles to breech the Gothic Line in Italy late in the war.