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Great War Centennial Corner
War Memorial in Cedars Park, Cheshunt, Hertfordshire

Compiled and copyright © Jakant Research 2021

The tank (1917) that stood in Cedars Park from 1921 to 1940 was one of 265 Presentation Tanks given to communities across Britain as they raised Funds for the War Effort. These consisted of 235 'Females' and 30 'Males'. Our current tank is a replica 'Male' and is one of only two tanks standing on an original presentation plinth - the other is at Ashford in Kent.

The original Presentation Tank was a 'Female' Mark IV (machine guns only) with number '2740', built at Fosters of Lincoln. It was donated by the National War Savings Committee after Cheshunt raised a considerable amount of money to support the Great War Effort, and was sold for scrap in May 1940 to Messrs Cox & Danks for 27 pounds, 16 shillings and 10 pence, which helped fund WWII. '2740' of 'D' Battalion first saw Action in the Battle of III Ypres - Passchendaele, supporting 18 Div of the Second Army on 12/8/1917 in the Advance on St. Julien, just NE of Ypres, becoming Ditched as very soft wet ground following prolonged heavy rain. On 22/8/1917 it received a direct hit from a German shell, which resulted in it being transferred to the Army Service Corps in early 9/1917 and converted to a 'Top-Draw Sledge Hauler' (a vehicle designed to pull a supply sledge which carried food, fuel and ammunition to the Front, over the churned-up conditions of war), only retaining its machine gun armament in a defensive role. About a year later, production of its successor - the Mark V - began, and slowly the remaining Mark IVs were taken out of War First Line Action and reserved as backup tanks.

Mabel Ettridge can be seen standing on the tank with her father in the 1922 photo on the information plaque in front of the tank plinth. Her daughter, Alison, donated the photo to the Council from the family archives.

The plinth remained bare until 21/7/2018, when Mark IV Tank 4086 (A1) from the Bovington Tank Museum was temporarily placed on it, to commemorate the Centenary of the Great War 'Armistice'.

Our War Memorial Tank (Lottery Grant purchase) is representative of all in the Tank Regiment during the Great War, and an identity has been heavily researched with the help of many experts and museums to be contemporary with the Active Service of the original Cedars Tank - our replica is based on '2325', a British 'Male' Mark IV (Cannons and Machine Guns) of 'G' Battalion of 6th Section (part of HQ Section), 20 Company, and listed as the 22nd Battalion Tank (i.e. G 22) - named "Grasshopper" by the Crew. 'G' Battalion fought alongside 'D' Battalion of '2740' on 12/8/1917 and was commanded by New Zealander Second Lieutenant George Ranald MacDonald - the Tank was 'Knocked Out of Action' with right track broken, and MacDonald was wounded twice whilst still retaining command. By 8/1918, having been wounded again, he was promoted to Acting Captain, being awarded the Military Cross for 'Conspicuous Bravery' (surviving the Great War). On 22/8/1917, '2325' was transferred to 12 Company of 'D' Battalion and in Action 'Broke Down and was Ditched'. It does not appear to have returned to 'G' Battalion or even survived, as "Grasshopper II" existed later in the Battalion. All Tank names started with the first letter of the Battalion, and in 1918 became interchangeable as either '7' or 'G'. Tank Trials were held at Hatfield Park in 1916 with ground obstacle work provided by 3 (Mid Herts) Battalion of the Hertfordshire Regiment. The development of the Tank was a means of breaking Trench Warfare stalemate to minimise the severe losses being experienced by the BEF and only became possible through the strong support of Winston Churchill, the First Sea Lord, in 1915 (originally called 'Landships' but 'Tank' evolved as a cover, suggesting 'Water Carriers'). In battle, the Tanks worked in Sections of three - 'Male' centred with 'Females' flanking.

The replica was built in 2004 for the film 'The Magic Flute', and bought from Pinetree Film Studios & refurbished by Tony Cooke and Kevin Jepson, Military Vehicle hobbyists. It also featured in 'Wonder Woman' and 'Transformers 5'. The guns and machinery of a 'Male' Mark IV have been accurately replicated, although wooden plasticised tracks replace the metal ones. The tank is 13 feet wide, 6 1/2 tonnes and 21 feet long - slightly shorter than an original Mark IV (which weighed 18 tonnes) so as to make it easier to move around on film sets. Planning began in 2018 for the tank's internals and tracks to be removed and used in the construction of a working Medium Mark A Whippet replica tank. Broxbourne Council became aware of this and decided to buy the external body for use as a presentation tank in Cedars Park. In the first half of 2019, the body was painted brown and not the common 'muddy green' that was widely used during the Great War. Support chocks have also been added by Jakant Research. On 1/7/2019, the tank was brought into the Park and placed on the original presentation plinth.

The excellent bronze sculpture of a Queen Victoria Rifleman in Cedars Park - all of eight foot tall - was created by Roger Andrews of Glamorgan, Wales, and donated to the community to Remember all those from The Great War (1914 to 1918) who were lost - some 1 million from the British Empire. There were additionally over 2 million wounded, many of whom succumbed to their injuries or were permanently disabled. We should also not forget the military and civilians who died clearing the battlefields, especially in Flanders and the Somme, of munitions and war detritus post-war.

The following soldier is thought to have been the youngest volunteer recruit from the Broxbourne District during the Great War:

Rifleman 1687 William Ernest Taylor UGLOW (17 years old) was in 1/9 Battalion of the Queen Victoria Rifle Brigade (First Line - Territorial Force) of the London Regiment, who landed in France in August 1914 as part of the initial British Expeditionary Force of 100,000, who were sent to support France and Belgium against the invasion by the Imperial German Army according to Treaty. Rifleman Uglow joined the Territorial Brigade just prior to the Great War and their early positioning was at Wulverghem, West Flanders, following the first Battle of Ypres (the Germans being on much higher ground along the Messines Ridge, South of Ypres (The Salient) and between Kemmel in France, and Messines in Belgium). He is listed as being Killed in Action on 1st January 1915, along with over 40 others of his battalion (who had been sleeping in a barn used as a temporary overnight bivouac with his Company) through an incendiary bombardment from Hooge heights (the shell was either from a Trench Mortar or Light Field Artillery), plus many others seriously injured! There is 'No Known Grave' for William, therefore he is Commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial Arch (remembering nearly 55,000) at the eastern Gate and Wall of Ypres (Ieper) on Panel 54, annotated as a Private. He is also remembered on the Cenotaph at Cheshunt Almshouses. He was the son of William Ernest and Florence Uglow.

Great War Centennial Corner - Appeal for Support (27/2/2021)

Since 9/2020, Broxbourne Borough Council has refused permission for us to sign up our Tank accordingly, even though templates and spray paint available since then, without a logical explanation or justification.

Our War Memorial could become very special, if managed and new information boards provided as promised. There is great interest from serving Armoured Corps Personnel, the New Zealand Commission, and even the Chinese Embassy in that the Central Tank Workshop was mainly manned by excellent Chinese Labour Corps engineers (from the 96,000 CLC who were employed from China to support the BEF in France and Flanders - 2,000 of which remain in our CWGC Cemeteries, many from the 1919 Spanish Flu Pandemic whilst clearing War detritus).

Please e-mail your support with getting our Tank correctly signed for historical and remembrance reasons. This Tank is one of only two representative British Great War tanks standing in an open setting for public display in Great Britain. The other is at Ashford, Kent, and was moved to its new location in the town in 2018 to commemorate the centenary of the Armistice. Cheshunt and Hertfordshire should be proud of this new War Memorial, with an excellent 8-foot 'Tommy' opposite the Tank, representing the Queen Victoria Rifles (Territorial Force), which the community and visitors certainly are.

To show your support for this project please email:

Last updated: 9 October, 2021

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