Tank Corps, Royal Tank Corps, Royal Tank Regiment

The Great War

With the formation of the Tank Corps from the Heavy Branch of the Machine Gun Corps on 28 July 1917, the Tank Corps took on their role; however, by the time the Tank Corps came into existence, the Mk I and Mk II tanks, which were armed with the Vickers MG, were largely no longer in use and the armament had been replaced with Hotchkiss and Lewis guns.

The Inter-War Period

The introduction of the new range of medium and light tanks in the 1920s and 1930s saw wide use of the Mk IVA, Mk IVB, Mk VI, Mk VI* and Mk VII Vickers MGs on tanks. These were crewed by the Royal Tank Corps which had been so-named on 18 October 1923. It then became the Royal Tank Regiment on 4 April 1939.

The Second World War

The start of the Second World War saw the British Army using medium and light tanks in service with the Royal Tank Regiment. Many of these were armed with the Mk VI, Mk VI* and Mk VII variants of the Vickers MG.

11th

Due to the lack of sufficient armoured vehicles and tanks at the start of the Second World War, this unit formed part of the 2nd MMG Bde. It joined the Brigade on 22 November 1940 and remained in it until 09 December 1940, when the Brigade was redesignated and reorganized as the 25th Army Tank Brigade.

43rd

Due to the lack of sufficient armoured vehicles and tanks at the start of the Second World War, this unit formed part of the 2nd MMG Bde. It joined the Brigade on 01 June 1940 and remained in it until 09 November 1940.

49th

Due to the lack of sufficient armoured vehicles and tanks at the start of the Second World War, this unit formed part of the 2nd MMG Bde. It joined the Brigade on 01 June 1940 and remained in it until 09 November 1940, when the Brigade was redesignated and reorganized as the 25th Army Tank Brigade.

57th

Due to the lack of sufficient armoured vehicles and tanks at the start of the Second World War, this unit formed part of the 2nd MMG Bde. It joined the Brigade on 01 June 1940 and remained in it until 09 November 1940, when the Brigade was redesignated and reorganized as the 25th Army Tank Brigade.

With the adoption of new models of tanks from 1942 onwards, the Mk VI, Mk VI* and Mk VII Vickers MGs were not introduced into the new vehicles: Besa and Browning machine guns were used instead. From that point, the Royal Tank Regiment did not have any routine official use of the Vickers.


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